Daily Postings
Literature : first proof


Katie Baines. Speech Bubbles, 2011. Graphite and acrylic on panel. Courtesy of the artist.

We are not concerned with the original intentions of the laws. We are not concerned with the universities’ motivations. We are not concerned with memories or classification. Nothing would suggest we are concerned specifically with efficiency, citizenship, merit, or standard of living. We are concerned with the “good of all.”

We are not concerned with consumption. We are not concerned with demographics. We are not concerned with broader demographics. We are not concerned with global trends. We are not concerned with global religious demographics. We are not concerned with generalities, only chicken. We are not concerned with surveys.

We are concerned with the survey. We are concerned with the survey and we do not know for sure that “being found on the street” makes one sociable. We are not concerned with the general population but the electorate specifically. We are concerned with the effect of recent coverage on the candidate’s chances of winning. We are concerned with the effect on traditional marriages between a man and a woman. We are not concerned with underreporting or with the state’s actual motivations. We are not concerned with whether Americans have access to their “needs.” We are not concerned with comparing skin types.

Governmental revenues do not concern us in the least. We are not concerned with cost alone. We are only concerned with improving on present costs, not minimizing them. We are concerned with customer costs and benefits, not company profits or competitiveness. We are not concerned with affordability or remunerations. We are not concerned with percentage of marginal revenue. Human suffering and the economy as a whole do not concern us.

We are concerned with the present. We are concerned with the present, not the future. We are not concerned about the future. We are concerned with the present and the future, not the past. We are not concerned with the future and in any case we don’t know how much China would seek. We are concerned with the long run. We are concerned with the recent past. We are not concerned with the period before 1974. We are not concerned with other time periods or with population. We are not concerned with the period after the purchase date but rather the period over which the mayonnaise may be sold. We are concerned only with the periods in question (the past).

We are not concerned with alternate strategies. We are concerned with the validity of claims. We are not concerned with cutting out the items in question but substituting one for the other. We are concerned with the workings of American sports merchandise. We are concerned with Rochester specifically, not the whole country. We are concerned with the city’s residents, not outsiders. We are concerned with evaluating whether the flight is taking place, not what causes it. We are not concerned with the negative ramifications of getting rid of the tourists.

We are concerned with pollution-related illnesses only. We are concerned with pub design. We are concerned about large-scale usage. We are concerned about RATES, not nominal numbers of crimes. We are concerned with only the overall underclass criminal behavior. Other bars’ performances do not concern us. We are concerned only with coconut oil-based lighteners. We are not concerned with the fate or activities of the drama department, much less the athletic department. We are not concerned with other possible points of pride or with the content or readership of O’Connor’s books. We aren’t concerned with these “most famous plays.” We are not concerned specifically with what orchestral music audiences or contemporary listeners thought or think. We are only concerned with actors. Who donates the liver is less our concern than whether it is a feasible organ to donate. It is the number of species, not the number of words, that concerns us.

Other markets do not concern us. Other agents do not concern us. Other antibiotics do not concern us. Competition does not concern us. 1985 does not concern us. Dementia does not concern us. We are concerned with the end attained.

"Manifesto" is assembled from all of the sentences in a GMAT Critical Reasoning manual that specify what is or is not within the scope of a given argument.

Daniel Levin Becker is reviews editor of the Believer and the youngest member of the Oulipo. His first book, Many Subtle Channels: In Praise of Potential Literature, was published last April by Harvard University Press. More of his work can be found at dinnerlunchbreakfast.com.

Tags:
Experimental writing
manifesto
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