Link Roundup: August 21

Welcome to Flood Media’s link roundup! Each week, we bring you fresh Flood-approved content from around the web, covering current events, debates, and hot takes.

For Overland, Ulli Clements reports on race relations in a small general store on a remote cattle station north of Alice Springs. The piece is thoughtful, full of illuminating details, and doesn't shy away from an acknowledgment of the author's own (mis)perceptions. (At one point Ulli congratulates a local Aboriginal man for killing a kangaroo with a spear. "They laughed at me. ‘No, Ulli. He killed it with a gun.’") Also, if you need any more convincing that the Basics Card is a deeply fucked and racist invention that reinforces economic precarity in Aboriginal communities, read this.

I first heard the writer R.L. Stephens on a 2017 episode of Chapo Trap House, and I've been a fan ever since. His 2017 Jacobin essay, 'Between the Black Body and Me' is a relative (oldie) but an (objective) goodie, taking on liberal darling Ta-Nehisi Coates. "What we find all too often in Coates’s narrative universe are bodies without life and a racism without people," he writes. "To give race an ontological meaning, to make it a reality all its own, is to drain it of its place in history and its roots in discrete human action. To deny the role of life and people — of politics — as Coates does is to also foreclose the possibility of liberation." (Side note: thank god someone has finally addressed the insufferable po-mo tic of referring to "bodies" at every available opportunity. You know who you are.)

In May this year, journalist and poet Tiffany Higgins rode the bus in Brazil, talking with locals about the Brazilian truck drivers' strike. Her reportage, for Guernica, dives into the complexity of Brazilian politics, workers' struggles, and military interventions. "One person mentions the media coverage of the strike: “The media say that it’s only a minority of drivers that are striking.” José’s daughter Milena and the bus driver chime in at the same time: “É todo mundo.” It’s everyone."

I'm sure I'm not alone in finding cutesy ads for food delivery services insufferably twee, smug,  patronising, and generally teeth-setting-on-edge-y. Luckily for my cranky soul, there's an entire article in The Baffler that shares my views on the matter! Olivia Rutigliano explores how advertising in the "serve-us" industry perpetuates an attitude of consumer entitlement and erases the actual labour conditions that make food delivery services possible. 

In poor districts of Mexico City, residents - mainly women - must organise their existence around the erratic schedules of water delivery trucks, known as pipas. In 'Every Last Drop', Alice Driver offers a window into the day-to-day lives ruled by water scarcity: lives at the nexus of gender, environmental, political, and economic forces. “On the news, they always talk about the importance of water education, of not wasting water," says Nancy Hinojosa, "but the people who have the resources when they turn on their faucets—they are the ones who waste it the most. Because we have few economic resources, we fight for it and we know what it means to carry water home.”

And now for something completely different: Dutton hasn't felt this powerful since he was holding a radar gun on the Bruce Highway. ACAB.

Until next week!