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Web Letter

David Yaffe's writing in "Misterioso" rankles on many levels. For one, it is a classic example of a certain sort of parasitism--an enhancement of self by attaching to a more worthy other. And then there are the oh-so-hip, put-down uses of such as "real gone" and "far out" and his strained, oh-so-clever use of Monk's ring to rap (misspelling intended) things up at the end.

But such as those ain't nuthin' compared to Yaffe's use of Ralph Waldo Emerson's "Nothing is sacred at last except the integrity of one's own mind," unattributed, as though it were his own coinage. If that ain't parasitic, what is?

All of which leads to this: What in Mr. Yaffe's writing, about Monk or anything else, is to be trusted? Where is the integrity?

The Nation has a tendency to include too much of this sort of pretentiousness. It's one of the reasons I haven't subscribed since shortly after 9/11. The main reason being its role as just one more example of the establishment-controlled media, calculatedly devoid of anything of real insight into our dilemma as a nation. Courageous journalism it ain't.

David Zaido

Webster, MA

Jan 17 2010 - 10:40am