We all know what a sandwich is. It’s something delicious, slapped between two slices of bread.

But when it comes to taxes, nothing is simple.

On today’s show, we explore how a simple thing like taxes on food can break open a world of interlocking exemptions, rule bending, and philosophical questions like: when is a burrito a sandwich?

"You know when you enter a Starbucks store, it’s usually always displayed in some posters there, their message which is: Yes, our cappuccino is more expensive than others, but - and then comes the story - we give one percent of all our income to some Guatemala children to keep them healthy. For the water supply for some Sahara farmers, or to save the forests, to enable organic growing coffee…whatever, whatever. Now, I admire the ingeniosity of this solution. In the old days of pure simple consumerism you bought a product and then you felt bad. My god, I’m just a consumerist while people are starving in Africa. So the idea was you had to do something to counteract your pure destructive consumerism. For example, I don’t know, you contribute to charity and so on. What Starbucks enables you is to be a consumerist and to be a consumerist without any bad conscience because the price for the countermeasure - for fighting consumerism - is already included into the price of a commodity. Like you pay a little bit more and you are not just a consumerist but you also do your duty towards environment - the poor, starving people in Africa and so on and so on. It’s, I think, the ultimate form of consumerism."
Slavoj Zizek (via blackestdespondency)

(via maxistentialist)

"A remarkable moment from last night’s remarkable Snowden video from the Guardian. In a discussion (around the 7:40 mark) of zero-knowledge systems whose operators can’t spy on you even if they want to, Snowden reminds us that Dropbox is an NSA surveillance target cited in the original Prism leaks, and that the company has since added Condoleeza Rice, “probably the most anti-privacy official we can imagine,” to its Board of Directors. He contrasts Dropbox with its competitor, Spideroak, whose system is structured so that it can’t betray you, even if Condi Rice wanted it to."