Linh Dinh

Linh Dinh is the author of two books of stories, five of poems, and the novel, Love Like Hate. He's tracking our deteriorating socialscape through his frequently updated photo blog, State of the Union.

Articles by this author

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Saturday, December 18, 2010
Bloody Trophies
We have an unprecedented capacity to absorb scandals. Wikileaks or no, Americans wake up each day to a new set of outrages, yet nothing changes. With hundreds of channel at our fingertip and a billion songs sloshing in our skulls, no crime against country, man or earth can linger long enough in any brain cell to matter. All synapses are currently busy with bullshit, yet again, thank you.
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Sunday, December 05, 2010
Helpless
"A man, without force, is without the essential dignity of humanity. Human nature is so constituted, that it cannot honor a helpless man, although it can pity him; and even this it cannot do long, if the signs of power do not arise." --Frederick Douglass
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Sunday, November 28, 2010
Bumbling Terrorists
Tell me if you've heard this one: An FBI agent infiltrates an actual, figurative or virtual mosque, finds the most gullible and angry dork around, encourages him to get even, plots out some dubious plan, gives him bombs that don't quite work, then arrests this dupe to much fanfare.
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Thursday, November 25, 2010
Enabling Bullies
This July, traveling by Greyhound, I arrived in Detroit from Windsor, Canada. A dog sniffed all passengers for drugs, and a border agent checked our bags. U.S. citizens produced IDs, while foreigners displayed visas and/or passports. Nothing was out of the ordinary except for this exchange I had with an officer: "Why are you going to Detroit?" "I've never been here. I just want to check it out." "How long will you stay?" "Just a couple of days."
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Saturday, November 20, 2010
I Feel You
It's no big deal that they strap people onto boards, then pour water onto their faces, drowning them, more or less, in our name, but we don't make a big fuss until they nudge our nuts. It's OK that they incinerate countless alien bodies, call it shock and awe (some), but we don't go berserk until they palm our inner thighs. Go ahead and commit countless crimes, profit and murder with our tax money, destroy nations, including this one, be imperial, kick ass without mercy, kill into eternity with regular troops, part-timers or mercenaries, but don't mess with our junks!
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Saturday, October 30, 2010
Prone Pioneers
Don’t sit. Don’t lie. I mean, lie all you want to, especially if you’re sitting in office, but don’t sit or lie on a San Francisco sidewalk between 7AM and 11PM, should Proposition L pass this week. Repeated offenders could be fined up to $500 or jailed for 30 days.
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Tuesday, September 28, 2010
Welcome to the Recovery
Soothed, fortified and frankly vindicated by the cheerful effluvium that the recession is indeed over, I set out for a walk on this Saturday morning. No doomsayer, I’ll refute, if not taser outright, all unpatriotic spoilsports who would point to crumbling factories, empty malls and capsized mortgages as evidences that we’re eternally shafted. Our elevators are still yoyoing, thank you, except for those in aforesaid factories. Speaking of shafts, is that a foot sticking out of the frozen puddle?
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Tuesday, August 31, 2010
Spengler for Dummies
Nearly a hundred thousand people flocked to Glenn Beck's Restoring Honor rally. Entire families drove in from distant states. They wore red, white and blue, carried American and Don't Tread On Me flags. Some brandished a Christian standard, white, with a red cross on blue canton. A man peddled a self-designed, quite attractive Tea Party flag.
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Saturday, August 28, 2010
Kill Them
Michael Enright, a 21-year-old college student, slashed a NYC cab driver in the face and neck because this man was Muslim. Enright is being held in a psychiatric ward. If he is mad, then the United States is also insane. Enright's assault merely mirrors what we, as a nation, have done for nearly a decade.
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Thursday, August 19, 2010
Dissing T-Shirts
Lumpens are parading in underwear. What a concept, We'll charge them real money for a kind of tube sox for the torso. Male, female, one size fits all. (Actually three, Rotund, Super Rotund and Outta Here.) We don't pay, but triple the price if they advertise for us. In every corporate shack serving deep fried whatever, reconstituted meat matter and colored whey, diners shows individuality by their choice of chest advertisement. By donning a Blackwater muscle T, dad declares his allegiance to privatization and kick ass. Rebellious daughter flaunts Old Navy.
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