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The iPod: a solipsistic defense against the world’s sucky music

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• Is the world eternal? YES
• Do humans have contra-causal free will (i.e., can humans do otherwise)? NO
• Is beauty in the eye of the beholder? YES
• Do humans have souls? YES
• Are there natural rights? YES
• Is it morally permissible to eat meat? NO
• Is the unexamined life worth living? NO
• Is truth subjectivity? YES
• Is virtue necessary for happiness? YES
• Can a computer have a mind? YES
• Can humans know reality as it is in itself? YES
• Is hell other people? YES
• Can art be created accidentally? NO
• Can we change the past? NO
• Are numbers real? NO
• Is it always better to know the truth? YES

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From Slate:

If recording and mechanical reproduction opened up the world of musical pluralism—of listening to other people’s music until you and they became other people yourselves—digital reproduction expanded that pluralism to the point where it reversed itself. You have all the world’s music on your iPod, in your earphones. Now it’s “other people’s music”—which should be very exciting to encounter—as played in cafes and stores that is the problem. In any public setting, it acquires a coercive aspect. The iPod is the thing you have to buy in order not to be defenseless against the increasingly sucky music played to make you buy things.


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