I am amazingly fortunate to have a young lady named Sarah Cicuto (@cicutoface) on my management team. She does all of my bands’ release writing, sponsorship proposals, marketing plans, one-pagers.. All of the stuff that I’m not nearly eloquent enough to handle. She is an invaluable member of my organization, and I cannot stress enough my appreciation for her time and effort.
Sarah and I were presented with an interesting circumstance last week. I had an artist telling me that social media sites like Twitter, Foursquare, etc. were not game changers. Essentially that they were not worth the time. I was decently appalled. I pride myself on the education of my artists, whom I constantly forward articles from Music Think Tank and 9GiantSteps, but this wasn’t enough. My artist thought the information was anecdotal, thought these sites offered trivial gains. The words used were, “marginally successful.”
If I was decently appalled, Sarah was fuming. She began talking in the third person. “Sarah is upset,” I read. “Let’s do something about this,” I said. Then Sarah went back to her day job, applying social media and engagement plans for giant corporations. I thought that maybe we would do some research and send off an e-mail blast to my clients. Three days later, I got the following. It is a comprehensive article regarding social media and online presence. To say that I was pleasantly surprised would be an understatement.
I really think that Sarah nailed it. Here we have a wealth of information in language that any band can understand. After the jump, her article in full. Continue reading
In Fareed Zakaria’s The Post-American World the reader is given an insight into the growing global economy in which countries like China and India are gaining ground on the current world superpower, The United States of America. Also given are detailed examples of where the United States has gone wrong, and what improvements can be made in order to better adapt to the changing global power structure. The United States has slowly become a country that focuses on the worst of the world around it, leaving the nation unprepared to actually deal with the problems that arise in a changing landscape. (Zakaria 27) This is a landscape that is marked by the resurgence and return to greatness of two of the pre-industrial worlds great powers, China and India. China’s dictatorship has taken an active role in transforming that nation over the past thirty years, while in India the democratically run government has also seen considerable growth during this time period. In the meantime, the America that once influenced and set the global standard has been slipping away much the same way Britain did at the time of the Boer War. (173) Zakaria makes a case for America returning to this prior policy of “world building” through various means rather than the nations current trend toward bully tactics. All in all, Zakaria’s main points and ideas are well received and interesting. With that said, some of the information certainly leads the reader towards larger questions that, while somewhat addressed in the book, could definitely use some further thought. Continue reading
Three decades ago Latin America sat at the peak of what turned out to be a rollercoaster ride that devastated over half of a hemisphere. In the 1970s Latin America was deep into the Import Substitution Industrialization model and widespread political revolutions. The following will argue that in the short time after the fall of substitution, Latin America went through drastic changes that would have negative consequences for both human and economic development. Continue reading
Access to drinking water and sanitation facilities is a primary human development goal for all nations that wish to improve the lives of its citizens. Drinking water is hard to come by in nature on the scale that it is used in any country. Currently all developed nations have infrastructures such that it is relatively easy for individuals throughout the inhabited areas to access clean drinking water and human waste removal. In Argentina, the utilities that service drinking water and sanitation have had poor performance for several decades before the government decided to privatize roughly thirty percent of the municipalities. While water and sanitations are public goods, when governments fail to provide adequate service, privatization may have positive externalities during a short transition period (given accountability and contract length) until the political environment is stable enough to maintain utilities to optimize for human development. Continue reading
Throughout the twentieth century there have been several stigmas associated with communism, which range from people thinking that it takes away freedom to always having poorly run central planning, all of which are nonclass assumptions perceived from previous governments claiming communism. While in some instances there may be nonclass structures such as central planning or a despotic government in communism, the only aspect of a state which makes it communist, is the presence of a class structure of production, vis-à-vis whether or not workers are exploited. The fundamental class process within communism is one that grants the producers of surplus the first access to the surplus they produce. Examining class by surplus separates communism from other economic and state structures by allowing the reality of workers labour to be measured and rewarded. If a state does not have these class surplus structures in place then it is not communist, as is the case for every nation in history that claimed to be as such. This means that all negative notions of communism from history are invalid and the door must be reopened in order to examine how any nonclass structures, religion, power, property, etc., can coincide with the class process of communism. Differentiating the class structure of production, in terms of surplus, and the various nonclass social arrangements is vital in understanding various communisms. Continue reading