[ExI] Objective standards?

Dan TheBookMan danust2012 at gmail.com
Tue Sep 29 19:17:52 UTC 2015

On Tue, Sep 29, 2015 at 10:54 AM, spike <spike66 at att.net> wrote:

>  *From:* extropy-chat [mailto:extropy-chat-bounces at lists.extropy.org] *On
> Behalf Of *Dan TheBookMan
> *…*
> >… I did a double-take and wanted to share the idea of sales receipt as a
> tiny bit of 'literature.'
> Oh, ja I hadn’t thought of that angle.  I meant the total amount of money
> changing hands directly as a result of a piece of art, literature or music
> would constitute an objective measure of its inherent worth.

I thought you were offering it up as a measure of esthetic worth -- or the
esthetic component of inherent worth.

By the way, Paul Cantor's work might be of interest here. He wrote
_Gilligan Unbound: Pop Culture in the Age of Globalization_. Note: unlike
what someone here might think, he's a literary/media critic who doesn't
pooh pooh commercial success. (Again, Shakespeare, despite what someone
here thinks, was commercially successfully during his lifetime -- as was
Beethoven -- and widely popular.) See:


>  Measured by that standard, the Beatles anthology followed by Fleetwood
> Mac constitute the classical music of the 20th century.

Time will tell. They're definitely influential. I kind of like Harold
Bloom's idea with regard to canonical works: you have to wait a few
generations to see what sticks. In this regard, what's wildly popular of
recent work in the last fifty years is still too early to tell. (And, true
to form, this works well for Bloom's particular likes for centuries ago:
Shakespeare and Dante have survived. In terms of popularity -- which is not
the same as being part of the canon -- Shakespeare and Dante seem to have
outlasted much of their contemporaneous contenders. Who here, save for
those with a deep interest in drama or Elizabethan England, has seen (!) or
read the plays of Middleton or Marlowe? And many of Dante's contemporaries
are mainly known because Dante included them in his work. In terms of
music, Beethoven has certainly done much much better than Hummel, though
during their lives both were thought of as equals, at least early on.
Hummel is not without influence, and you can certainly find recordings of
his work. But he's at a much lower rank in popularity. Why?)

>  >>…Just last night I accepted a receipt at point of sale (cash) and put
> it directly into the trash… it must be a cultural change to stop
> generating
> those useless scraps of paper.
> >….Many places now ask if the customer want a printed receipt. Places
> using Square also just email a receipt, so nothing gets printed -- unless
> there's a special request.  …Dan
> Attitudes have not only changed, they have reversed.  As recently as a
> decade ago, a hard copy on paper constituted “having” a document.  Now we
> don’t really “have” the document unless it is in a form which can be
> transmitted over phone lines.  If we have a paper hard copy, we have a
> picture of the document, from which we can create the document if we have a
> scanner.

 It's so much easier to track and manage, and also easier to confirm, the
digital stuff. With something like Square or online account-tracking, too,
you can know right away what's been spent where and the charges. I imagine
in the pre-digital period, one would have had to have waited for a
statement to come in to know who charge you what and when to see if
something was amiss.


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