Last night The Baffler held a meeting at Housing Works in New York City. The Atlantic Wire has obtained, through
colleagues sources at the CIA, a report on what transpired.
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THE BAFFLER'S ENGAGEMENT: PERSPECTIVES, OUTLOOK, AND IMPLICATIONS
Introduction / Background
The Baffler, a hyper-intellectual, sometimes satirical, left-wing publication, launched its latest issue, no. 19, on 2 April, 2012 after approximately 18 months on hiatus. The publication has been through multiple cycles of activity from its founding in Chicago in 1988. It currently operates from Cambridge, Massachusetts, with operatives primarily along the Eastern seaboard. Present for its meeting held at the Housing Works Book Store in Manhattan were four key members of the organization's leadership as well as approximately 50 to 60 rank-and-file members, ranging in age from early 20s to mid-60s, indentifiable by an abundance of sweaters, spectacles, and fashionable scarves. Senior leaders on hand were: recently installed editor-in-chief John Summers, senior editor Christopher Lehmann (see prior reports), and contributors David Graeber and Barbara Ehrenreich.
Discussions at the meeting outlined three major threats perceived by The Baffler:
1) THE ATLANTIC MONTHLY: An intelligence report within The Baffler's latest number, authored by Baffler operative Maureen Tkacik, posited that The Atlantic is probably a CIA front operation. She writes: "Of course The Atlantic is a turgid mouthpiece for the plutocracy, a repository of shallow, lazy spin, and regular host of discussion forums during which nothing is discussed. It is, in every formal trait, a CIA front." Tkacik, a Washington, D.C.-based operative, was not in attendance at the 2 April meeting. However, Lehmann, a senior editor, referred to Tkacik's report as an example of The Baffler’s mission to “dull the cutting edge” of culture. He also praised the publication for falling “outside the debate,” making clear his hostile intent toward media and culture in general. While The Atlantic styles itself as a "thought leader," Lehmann concluded, "I think we want to be either a thought provoker or, better yet, a thought destroyer."