: Geoffrey Nunberg in Sunday’s Times says that the word “populism” is coming back into use and favor with new meanings.

I take it to mean faith in the people. I tried calling this thing in which we’re all involved “populist media” until a few people (read: Clay Shirky) said that carried too much unclaimed baggage.

So I started calling this “citizens’ media.” And I like that better.

But I still want to see us reclaim “populist” for the people.

  • Populist still has that aftertaste of George Wallace and Huey Long. Perhaps when memories fade…

  • Populist media..
    ..Citizens media….
    By THE MOST ELITE (and destitute and, like me lazy) around…?? Who else could AFFORD to stamp their forehead with “blogger”…?!?)…???
    Uhhhhh, you don’t get that you will NEVER see the centrist/populist view by looking in two directions simultaneously… Away from both the center and anything remotely resembling humanism.
    And PLEASE don’t start yet another meme, humanist media, because the media has become a frickin’ computer with people teathered to IT (in more ways than one). Wifi your head around THAT meme. Turns out the crew that did the Matrix was headed up by Nostrodamus, where I just thought they were being very creative.
    Why you think the “revenge of the nerds” has been so brutal (intellectual lobotomy and all) and successful, Jeff?? And this isn’t just the work of the guys, gals…

  • I remember Huey Long as being a ‘populist’, only.
    Yeah, they both came to nearly the same conclusion (of their lives). I don’t recall their politics being all THAT similar, though, from what I recall from school of “the Kingfish”, iirc.
    Bloggers are naturals at abusing the ‘populist’ image for personal gain. Just because MOST-all bloggers are collecting more social capital than raw cash, doesn’t signify.
    That’s one-a the things I hate most about this Fantasy-BlogWorld: Everybody’s in favor of everybody (who’s on their side, which is pre-arranged in the daily “meet-ups”), when you get right down to it, until you really get right down to it.
    It’s comfortable though, because you almost always know exactly what pov a person is going to be for. And everybody gets to hate ‘the bad guys’… Literally.
    Nobody will admit, but it’s almost identical to high school, but they’re not called jocks and geeks. They’re called ‘those who’ve made their millions’, and ‘those who are gonna be there real soon now’.. (Since there’s apparently an almost-unlimited supply of social capital and cash to waste, these days).

  • Another problem with “populist” is that it doesn’t have a standard geographic meaning. You’d make money always betting that when “populist” is used to describe a Central or South American leader you’d never heard of it’s a journalistic euphemism for “Marxist.” You’d lose occasionally, but you’d come out ahead in the long run.