Links 6/3/19

Luxury cinemas are fighting Netflix with steak tartare, expensive booze, and gourmet popcorn Fast Company

This Tuesday, a US Federal Court May Decide the Fate of the Climate TruthOut

Ralph Nader: American Society Is in Rapid Decay TruthDid

What Can You, the Individual, Do to Fight Air Pollution? The Wire

Marijuana advocates hit unexpected roadblocks The Hill

‘It’s a miracle’: Helsinki’s radical solution to homelessness Guardian

Chess piece bought for £5 then left in drawer turns out to be medieval treasure worth £1m Independent

Hillary Clinton Testing Hollywood Waters With Planned Production Company & Studio Deal Deadline

Waste Watch

Scrap Collector: Malaysia returning 3,300 tons of contaminated plastic scrap Waste Dive

Texas struggles to keep pace as thirst for water intensifies Fort Worth Star-Telegram

Extreme weather has made half of America look like Tornado Alley WaPo

The Economic Cost Of Devastating Hurricanes And Other Extreme Weather Events Is Even Worse Than We Thought International Business Times

Syraqistan

The Most Powerful Arab Ruler Isn’t M.B.S. It’s M.B.Z. NYT

Protesters shot as Sudan military tries to clear Khartoum sit-in Al Jazeera

North Korea

Death And Resurrection In North Korea (Updated) Moon of Alabama

North Korean official seen in public days after report he had been executed MarketWatch

2020

Bernie Sanders: I Know Where I Came From. Does President Trump? NYT

Hickenlooper booed at California Democratic Convention for decrying socialism: ‘Read the room’ AlterNet

Warrior-Mayor Pete’s Sanctimonious Chest Thumping American Conservative

If Pete Buttigieg Is the “Opposition” to Trump, We Are Screwed TruthOut

Beto Spoke With Hillary Clinton This Week About the 2020 Campaign Daily Beast

California Democratic race is wide open, and Elizabeth Warren may be in top tier  San Fran Chronicle

With debates on horizon, Democrats sharpen attack lines The Hill. Hmm. Caveat lector.

737 MAX

FAA Warns Some Boeing 737s May Have Faulty Wing Parts NPR

Boeing Faces Doubtful Airline Chiefs in Mission to Restore Faith Bloomberg

Venezuela

In a Blow to Maduro, Russia Withdraws Key Defense Support to Venezuela WSJ

Class Warfare

It’s Time to Change the Way the Media Covers Crime  Marshall Project

The Populist Paradox Project Syndicate. Simon Johnson.

One Family’s Struggle to Escape Poverty in the UK Der Spiegel

Guillotine Watch

TO INFINITY & BEYOND From ‘young blood’ transfusions to apocalypse insurance – weird ways tech billionaires are trying to live forever The Sun

China?

If China cuts rare earth supplies, what can the US do? Asia Times

Why does Beijing suddenly care about AI ethics? MIT Technology Review

How soybeans became China’s most powerful weapon in Trump’s trade war The Conversation

India

India heatwave temperatures pass 50 Celsius Phys.org

Why Hindutva’s Dark Fantasy About India’s Muslims Could Become Real The Wire

Backstory: India’s giant Modi wave – why we didn’t see it coming Reuters

India laments loss of preferential access to US market FT

Election win gave Narendra Modi political capital to enforce quick reforms; portfolio choices show presidential style of working First Post

India no longer world’s fastest-growing economy BBC

Julian Assange

Assange won’t face charges over role in devastating CIA leak Politico

Trump Transition

Trump faces giant penis mowed into field near airport where he lands for UK state visit independent

COMB ON OVER Donald Trump sports slick new hairdo before flying to meet the Queen
The Sun

Donald Trump wades into Britain’s ‘interesting’ Brexit crisis Reuters

For the U.S. and China, it’s not a trade war anymore — it’s something worse LA Times

Huawei ban: why Asian countries are shunning Trump’s blacklist despite concerns about China’s influence SCMP

Trump Administration Considered Tariffs on Australia NYT

Antidote du Jour (via)

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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116 comments

  1. Amfortas the hippie

    i’ve always liked Michael Lind, even(especially) when i disagree with him.
    here’s an interesting differential diagnosis, and his preferred remedy—which looks a lot like old fashioned mercantilism, to me(I’m squarely in what he calls “Progressive Localism” camp…and “Yeoman” is one of my favorite words)
    https://americanaffairsjournal.org/2019/05/national-developmentalism-from-forgotten-tradition-to-new-consensus/

    so good mornin’, and now off to links

    Reply
    1. Swamp Yankee

      I’m a fan of the yeomanry and Red localism, too, Amfortas! I’ll never lose my suspicion of the Hamiltonian faction.

      And now to work on some Wampanoag-style mound agriculture….

      Reply
      1. Amfortas the hippie

        it does occur to me that i’d rather have political arguments with neomercantilists than with the starry eyed neoliberal utopians, any day.
        much in the same fashion that i get along better with Russel Kirk Conservatives than with randian or christofascist nutters.
        at the very least there’s room for compromise on things(i fail to see how local ag would interfere with boeing’s sales abroad)
        from what i remember, shared reality is kind of neat….and their neomercantilism necessitates a modicum of autarky, instead of trade for trade’s sake and the proliferation of middle men.(anyone noticed the price of beef? one might think that with tariffs and floods beef would be abundant and therefore cheap.$90 for an untrimmed brisket.under $30 around march)

        Reply
        1. tegnost

          I’m with you on getting all the various political stripes talking first, then try to find a way to communicate, by the way I spent some of my formative years on the caprock so I always like to hear your version of texas, it rhymes quite well with my experience

          Reply
          1. Swamp Yankee

            Agreed with both of you; I find paleo-cons easier to deal with than fanatical market fundamentalists, for sure.

            Reply
            1. polecat

              Not to worry .. I think a political sandworm is about to turn, and it looks really Yuuuuuge from my view on the dune crest. Should be here in less then a decade … sooner if the bloody blue Harkonnens continue to tighten their grip. All the worse if the Empire’s Sardaukar continue to mix it up with the prolies planetwide …

              Step up when that segment shows it’s tender side. It’s time to have your sandhooks ready !

              Reply
    1. NotTimothyGeithner

      https://twitter.com/thehill/status/1135272316072595462

      Presidential candidate John Delaney booed at CA Dem convention for saying: “Medicare for all may sound good but it’s actually not good policy nor is it good politics.”

      The way this SOB wags his finger at the crowd is particularly amusing. The best part is when he calls for “common purpose” while denouncing Medicare for All.

      Reply
      1. The Rev Kev

        It’s almost like the crowd wanted nothing to do with Hillary’s cloned policies via Delaney and the demand for ‘incrementalism’ as the only way forward. His campaign is now toast but I bet that the media keep on pushing his name forward.

        Reply
      2. Kokuanani

        Delaney used to be my Congress-person, until he resigned [thankfully] to run for president. He was worthless the entire time. The district is now represented [sic] by another zero, David Trone, who bought his way in. Our district [MD 6th] is the subject of the gerrymandering suit before the Supreme Court, and the boundaries are supposed to be re-drawn. Hopefully we’ll get returned to what is now Jamie Raskin’s district.

        Reply
    2. russell1200

      They say he misread the room. Maybe.

      Or maybe he feels that being booed in San Francisco gets him support in other quarters. And I guess any coverage is good coverage when you have ~40 folks in the field.

      I am not surprised that a Democratic Governor would quietly support fracking. But I am surprised at the apparent zeal of his support.

      Reply
      1. NotTimothyGeithner

        I had another comment, stuck in moderation, but this is the Southern paternalism endemic to Team Blue since Bill Clinton and an “I know best” schtick with the candidate profile they searched for. Obama gave it a rebranding of the “nerds are in charge” (because a few wore glasses), but its a “sit down and shut up, you damn kids” act. Now, they are looking for a few dopes to appeal to the “kids” who will still be loyal to the establishment.

        The problem with primaries is they have all the problems of Tuesday in November elections but they aren’t even standardized. These people like Hickenlooper can survive, and the local committee people are just living in weird “West Wing” fantasies. They tend not to notice and don’t want kids messing up their mole hills either. This “adults are talking” act works to keep people out.

        Reply
      2. flora

        Getting booed in SF doesn’t necessarily translate into getting cheered in the midwest. Guess he’s never heard of all the rural mutual-aid societies, the Grange organization, and farmers’ co-ops.

        Reply
        1. flora

          adding: for all the Milton Friedman-esque, neolib cheering the john galt image of progress – the idea the country was built and prospered only because of individuals of genius and drive (unhindered by govt regulations) – an equal and possibly more important reason the country prospered is due to the many mutual-aid societies. Public fire departments and police departments were set up as public mutual-aid organizations so individuals didn’t have to pay for individual fire department response, for example. (Once upon a time fire departments were private organizations so that if you bought coverage but your neighbor did not, and your neighbor’s house caught fire, your house might very well burn down, too.)

          Insurance companies were originally set up as mutual-aid organizations.
          That was before they morphed into rent extracting companies to make the CEOs ungodly wealthy. imo.

          Reply
          1. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

            I wish someone would calmly explain to these midgets that we already have socialism. No, not fire departments; the FIRE industry. Fossil fuels. Big Pharma. Big Prison. Big Surveillance. The MIC. We are so far from capitalism for those industries, with hundreds of billions in free money being passed over to them straight from government coffers each and every year. And nobody of course asking “but how will we pay for it?”

            The plebes of course get real capitalism: bankruptcy and creative destruction.

            Reply
      3. Eclair

        Russell1200, I would not say that Hickenlooper supports fracking ‘quietly.’ While governor, he was openly reviled for being behind a ‘frack everywhere’ (except by my house) policy. Along with Jared Polis. I recall driving up to Aspen in 2013 with a group of anti-fracking protesters, while he met with industry bosses (we counted the private jets at the Aspen Airport).

        We mocked him, former brewery owner, with a list of his favorite brews: Benzene Blonde, Pipeleak Lager, Polluted Aquifer Pale Ale, Hydrochloric Hefeweizen and Polyacrilymide Pilsner. How ya gonna make good beer after you pollute the aquifers and ground water? Buy it back from Nestle?

        Reply
      4. jrs

        I’m not surprised that a Dem governor would support fracking either, why Jerry Brown. However Hickenlooper is really bad. He’s one of the few candidates (Harris and Biden as well) who won’t sign the no fossil fuel money pledge (and I don’t even think that means the others are particularly good. It just means those 3 are OPENLY awful, and announcing it to the whole world).

        He’s bad. May he not even get in the debates. He deserves to crash and burn badly.

        Reply
  2. Wukchumni

    Luxury cinemas are fighting Netflix with steak tartare, expensive booze, and gourmet popcorn Fast Company
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    I probably went to the movies an average of once a week as often as the late 90’s, but doubt i’ve been to the cinema more than a few dozen times since.

    Once upon a time films were our zeitgeist, familiar talking points-a sure conversation starter, but only if you made the effort to go.

    I’m not sure exactly what stifled my interest, formulaic CGI violence that more increasingly resembled a strap-on dildo with a 50 round banana clip hanging below, inane plots all too often and crummy acting (or worse), and most importantly, movies lost their currency vis a vis word of mouth. Nobody had to see a film soon after it came out, I can wait a year or 2, it ain’t no big thang.

    Its worth noting that in the late 20’s, movie theaters went all out vying to outglam one another, as that was the only avenue left in terms of getting peoples rear echelon ensconced. Kinda like now.

    Reply
    1. Carolinian

      Its worth noting that in the late 20’s, movie theaters went all out vying to outglam one another, as that was the only avenue left in terms of getting peoples rear echelon ensconced. Kinda like now.

      It’s not just the 20s. There was the Cinerama/wide screen craze of the 50s and periodic attempts to revive 3-D projection. Unfortunately for the theater owners they can no longer out technology the home competition. There is IMAX, but even that has been degraded from its original specification.

      The truth is that movies and TV have always been about story and character and above all about actors and acting. It’s those big closeups people care about, not seeing every blade of grass.

      Reply
      1. Pespi

        I had a gin and tonic while sitting in a chair that shook, sprayed , mist, moved to match vehicles on screen, and probably something else too. It was fun, but not 35 dollars fun.
        I would like a couch that moves in time with movies for my house. Just need to bring that price down from 20k to 2k.

        Reply
    2. Eclair

      I am not averse to a bit of well-placed violence in films, although psychological violence is ever-so-much-more effective. Especially if I see it coming and can close my eyes.

      I have finally translated one of the current Netflix triad of descriptors for each film: “Cerebral” equals “No car chases or shoot-em-up sequences.”

      Reply
      1. Carolinian

        I have often thought about making a survey of how many fiction DVDs at my library feature a character holding a gun (proper two handed stance) on the cover. Here’s betting it’s, like, 50 percent.

        Action movies do well internationally because they don’t depend on dialog–hence Hollywood’s addiction.

        Reply
        1. Wukchumni

          I’d say you’re about right, and i’m betting that in 100% of the films with gunplay where somebody gets kilt, there’s no more than a couple lines of grieving allowed before moving on to more fruitful plot development.

          Reply
          1. ambrit

            Kurosawa was on to that theme. His visuals of violence were eerily compelling, but not gore for the sake of thrills. The ending of “Sanjuro” comes to mind. The end of Mifune’s character in “Throne of Blood” also resonates.
            The ‘seppuku’ of the Ronin who accidentally causes the death of the old woman in “47 Ronin” as depicted in one of the early colour Japanese versions of the tale is all hidden, until the spray of blood hits the inside of the rice paper screen the camera is looking at from the outside. The shock value, without gore, is significant.
            As someone wiser than me once said, “The true horrors are all in the mind of man.”
            Chushingura wiki: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ch%C5%ABshingura

            Reply
            1. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

              Or David Lean, directing Dr. Zhivago. He shows the horror of a massacre by simply zooming in on the face of Omar Sharif watching the massacre. Very powerful and no buckets of blood required

              Reply
              1. ambrit

                Some of the works by directors who learned their craft during the silent film days can be stunning. The imagery in Fritz Lang’s “M” is worth a TED talk all by itself. Some later practitioners I favour include Lindsay Anderson, Kubrick, Ken Russell (almost the entirety of “The Devils” qualifies as ‘Art Film,’) Werner Herzog, indeed, this list can go on practically forever. There is a wealth of talent ‘out there’ for making films, just not a particularly talented wealth to finance it’s production.
                The film version of F Scott Fitzgerald’s “The Last Tycoon” tried to show this aspect of Hollywood in particular. I haven’t seen the Amazon series. (Amazon does television! What next? Amazon DIY surgery kits?)

                Reply
                1. Yves Smith

                  I LOVE M and I really need to watch more early and classic movies. In addition to your faves, I also like Fassbinder and Bertolucci. The Lives of Others is a great movie by a first-time director, Florian Henckel von Donnersmarck. I hope he lives up to his promise.

                  Reply
                  1. ambrit

                    Lang’s only French film, made when he was leaving NAZI Germany, was a version of “Liliom” starring Charles Boyer with some almost surrealist set designs. Well worth looking at. Compare it to the later American musical version of the story, “Carousel,” and find a study in the contrasts between the two ‘Western’ versions of European civilization, the Old and the New Worlds.
                    One of the few real advantages to DVDs and ‘streaming’ I have encountered is that “Art Film” is now much easier to find and see. Not living in a “Big City” is no longer an excuse for not seeing the non-commercial works. Indeed, I will go a step further and suggest that all true art is of necessity “commercial.” Work done for patrons always holds the potential for degenerating into propaganda. Someone else, a restricted and unitary “someone else” at that can subtly impose strictures on the production of a person’s art. The wide net of “public” funding can ameliorate and soften the forces of circumspection.
                    Oh, so much to see, so little time left.
                    That would make a good story. A person eagerly waiting to see a film, with a secret health condition. What a confusion and conflict of themes and desires!
                    Bloody ‘Stoic Film Institute’ stuff.

                    Reply
                    1. ambrit

                      Also, Walker Percy’s “The Moviegoer.”
                      I met Percy when we lived in Covington, Louisiana. Just a, “Hello. Nice to meet you,” exchange. He used to have a weekly breakfast club at the local Waffle House. I never sat in there. He lived well, having been a doctor before becoming a successful writer.

      2. BobW

        Eclair, that is why Hitchcock movies are still worth watching, the psycho (see what I did there?) tension.

        Reply
    3. Cal2

      Wuk,
      Why so few are going to the movies?
      When’s the last movie that has been shown in which normal parents support their family, raise children and do something constructive with their life?

      Thank god for streaming, at least people can watch good things.

      Hollywood is a cultural sewer, run by a small number of elitists, whose mission is to make money while they further degrade the society they live in for some strange reason.

      Witness Hillary Clinton’s upcoming movie deal.
      Here’s the kind of people she’s going to work with and who were major donors to her failed campaign to represent “working class Americans”:

      https://la.curbed.com/2015/6/25/9946506/david-geffen-malibu-compound

      “For the cool price of $85 million, David Geffen has sold his oceanfront residence along Malibu’s Carbon Beach neighborhood…”

      https://la.curbed.com/2016/12/12/13902424/malibu-property-owners-fined-blocking-beach-access

      https://www.opensecrets.org/overview/topindivs.php?view=hi
      search for “Malibu” in the list

      Reply
    4. Plenue

      This just isn’t true. Hollywood produces lots of films, and plenty of them are still worth seeing. What you’re complaining about seems to be the big tent-pole action fests, which are a model that is ultimately doomed to fail.(two or three hundred million official budget, plus at least that much again for advertising; it won’t take many failures of that magnitude to bankrupt a studio).

      Movies are probably in a better place now than they’ve ever been, since streaming services and affordable, good quality digital cameras have drastically lowered the barriers for making a movie. Studios, especially smaller ones, love low and modestly budgeted movies. Something like Get Out, which cost less than 10 million but made 255 million, is where the real money is at.

      And word of mouth is most definitely still a thing, it’s just more digital than verbal these days.

      Reply
      1. Late Introvert

        Hollywood movies are not in a better place then ever before, what planet are you living on? Expensive ugliness.

        Reply
        1. ambrit

          A lot of the Indie stuff is good. Then they “Go Hollywood.”
          “Going Hollywood” has been a term of derision since people first started making movies there.
          The “Money People” are the real villians in this plot.

          Reply
          1. polecat

            Criterion Films is a great place to find movies for purchase that aren’t available elsewhere .. their roster includes many fine Janus Films selections.

            Lots to choose from. Worth a looksy.

            Reply
        2. Plenue

          The planet where I actually watch movies, instead of just parroting that the industry only produces crap.

          Reply
          1. Late Introvert

            Ok, sorry. That was rough and I apologize. I was taking out anger. I’m a huge fan of foreign films and indie American films and I know there’s a lot of activity on the margins of Hollywood, which I think was your original point.

            This is why I don’t usually post, I regret it later!

            I also operate cameras as a major income source so this is a touchy subject for me.

            Reply
    5. lordkoos

      The CIA has an office whose primary purpose is to liaison with Hollywood. There has always been a certain amount of propaganda in film, but I think recently it has become more pronounced. I rarely watch movies in theaters now because I can’t afford them, and as you mentioned, there is an awful lot of crap out there. Mostly what I see now is the rise of fantasy pictures, often violence. Marvel is a good example, and their movies seem very successful.

      Reply
      1. OpenThePodBayDoorsHAL

        The length and breadth of “the culture” is a field of pro-violence propaganda. Shooting someone in the face is not normal acceptable human behavior and should not be normalized, but it is. What a perverted society: we ban images of the beautiful naked human form as “pornographic” but a man spraying a room full of children with bullets is considered wholesome family entertainment.

        The “Call of Duty” video game now even features anti-Russian propaganda, can’t have Junior growing up thinking Russians are just people like you and me trying to get on with their lives

        Reply
    6. Procopius

      During the Great Depression movies had their hey-day. First, they were cheap. A kid’s saturday matinee was a nickel and a regular performance was around 35¢, maybe raised to 50¢ for a real blockbuster, but that was a lot of money in those days. Most importantly, they were air conditioned in the summer and heated in the winter, at a time when home air conditioning was unknown and landlords might cut heat to save money.

      Reply
  3. Ignim Brites

    “Ralph Nader: American Society Is in Rapid Decay”. I wonder what Nietzche would have to say about this screed.

    Reply
    1. ambrit

      I would rather use Saint Augustine as my philosophical cicerone than Nietzche. The thunderous Teuton is ‘small beer’ by comparison.

      Reply
      1. Crestwing

        I failed to finish my master’s thesis on Nietzsche, because, in the end, I concluded that he was a politician, not a philosopher.

        My question for Nietzsche is: “Just how incompetent, dumb, arrogant, or weak did the masters have to be for the slaves to successfully replace master morality with slave morality?”

        Reply
        1. mpalomar

          I thought Nietzsche’s interesting insight was that slave morality only enhances the amorality of the powerful, a symbiotic relationship that insures the meek will inherit the earth, i.e at death, preferably buried under it and presumably on their way to some promised after life.

          Reply
          1. Crestwing

            Indeed, power is its own justification. Master morality is not just an alternative moral system to slave morality; it is of an entirely different order.

            So how did the ancient masters succumb to slave morality? The masters are certainly stronger, better in every way then the slaves.

            It seems to me that, contrary to Nietzsche’s thinking, the slaves did understand the masters’ morality. They had to, to minimize the daily beatings.

            So the slaves learned (Nietzsche has an extended essay on the origins of memory, which unsurprisingly for Nietzsche’s thinking, involves the infliction of pain.) how to subvert and poison master morality.

            All the while, the masters blithely carry on paying no attention to slave morality because it was beneath them.

            Reply
            1. witters

              “So how did the ancient masters succumb to slave morality? The masters are certainly stronger, better in every way then the slaves.

              It seems to me that, contrary to Nietzsche’s thinking, the slaves did understand the masters’ morality. They had to, to minimize the daily beatings.”

              No – and your “contrary” is absolutely the wrong way around. The Slaves had an internalized rational depth the Masters did not, and they developed it precisely to “minimize the daily beatings.” The rot for the Masters set in with Socrates’ dialectic (and so the end of the Tragic Age of Greece).

              Reply
        2. Oregoncharles

          Nietzsche was important because he was an extreme skeptic exploring the ethical implications of skepticism – in contrast to Kant. Of course, his writing was so flamboyant that it was often difficult to ascertain what he really thought – again, in contrast to Kant.

          Wouldn’t your insight have made a good thesis? It’s certainly interesting.

          Reply
          1. Crestwing

            Oh, Nietzsche is important for philosophy, even if only to understand what happened in 20th-century continental thinking.

            It took a lot of reading and rereading of Nietzsche to latch onto that question. By that time I had become frustrated with him, and couldn’t find the motivation to continue the thesis.

            Reply
      2. MyLessThanPrimeBeef

        The Teuton’s not all bad.

        His ‘stare into an election long enough, the election will stare back at you’ is still useful today.

        So, who’s ahead today?

        Reply
  4. icancho

    the antidote critter is hidden in “unequal blush jig”.
    or, alternatively, in “a diacritical pause”.

    Reply
  5. Carolinian

    Re movie theaters–this is a rather silly article that assumes expensive eateries with movie screens attached will somehow save exhibition and convince the movie studios not to abandon the “release window” which is in fact the only thing keeping movie theaters alive. To be sure it can be exhilarating to watch a good comedy with a large audience but these days watching a drama can be quite the opposite with the patrons in front of you fiddling with their iPhones or discussing the actors’ costumes. Add in the odors of cooked cuisine and 1950s “smell-o-vision” will indeed be revived.

    It is now possible to buy an inexpensive digital projector that will throw an 8 ft wide picture in 2k resolution that is the same resolution as most movie theaters (film projection is dead). In fact the cost of a few nights out at one of those pricey restaurant cinemas would get you one. Boutique cinemas will still be around perhaps, but the same movies will more than likely be simultaneously streaming to home computers.

    Reply
    1. Wukchumni

      Our neighbor in Mineral King has an internet movie projector powered by a fairly silent generator, and a 9 foot screen that unfolds and sets up in a jiffy, where we watch films on the deck of their cabin. We’ve seen 5 or 6 movies that way, the last being “The Russians Are Coming, The Russians Are Coming”.

      Reply
    2. votefornot6

      I don’t know…there’s an Alamo Drafthouse near where I live, and I enjoy going to movies there. It’s not just the first-run films and menu (which is pretty good), but the overall moviegoing experience which makes it worthwhile.

      Reply
      1. Trent

        Movies started to lose me when they began playing ads before hand. That and the overall quality seems to have gone down terribly like most everything else in this world.

        Reply
      2. Carolinian

        When I visit Phoenix there’s a $2 theater we like to go to even though the movies shown are already out on DVD.

        All I’m saying is that those giant mall multiplexes are likely to become dinosaurs and drafthouses are not going to change the equation. Movie theaters take up a lot of real estate and are very expensive to run due to utilities etc.

        Reply
        1. jo6pac

          They also have to have state of the art fire systems and hvac systems. They really add into the cost of construction.

          Reply
    3. Cal2

      “Buy an inexpensive digital projector that will throw an 8 ft wide picture in 2k resolution that is the same resolution as most movie theaters…” onto what?

      Spend less than $100 and and you have the perfect screen on a blank wall.

      https://www.projectorcentral.com/paint_perfect_screen_$100.htm

      8 feet wide? How about 12 feet? or 14 feet, depending on the “shape” of the projected film, “Aspect ratio.”

      Do the math. If four family members go to the movies, add up the gas, parking, tickets, junk food…probably $60 or more per movie. In less than a year of not doing that, one could pay for the projector, the screen and streaming, like Netflix, Amazon or Criterion, Warner Bros etc.

      Thousands of good/bad movies, how to’s, and other videos, some in high definition, are available for free on Youtube.

      Reply
      1. Carolinian

        The amount of light any projector can supply is inversely proportional to the screen area (or wall area) so there are limits to how big before starts to seem hopelessly washed out. Even your 8 ft picture won’t have the same contrast as a flat screen television but it’s 8ft wide. Sit close enough and you might as well be at the Ziegfeld.

        The main point is that 2k movie theaters (some are 4k) aren’t supplying any greater resolution than a BluRay at home. Bigger or smaller doesn’t change the resolution or sharpness and the amount of detail.

        Reply
        1. Cal2

          True, but what do you think you are looking at in a movie theater? They are all video projection now.
          Criterion Channel B&W films are streamed at level so high one can seen the grain structure of the film. On a 27″ 5K Mac desktop, the picture is as good as in a theater.
          Projected, the image can be reduced in size with the zoom control to the same quality point.

          Forgot one thing above. You must paint the rest of the room a dark color for the best viewing.

          Reply
          1. Carolinian

            Is there an echo in here? As I said theaters now are mostly 2k but some I believe do use 4k projectors or UHD. Top streaming sites now do so in 1080p which is 1920 pixels across–2k–and that is the resolution of Blu Ray.

            Film projection can still be found in some art theaters and special situations (the Fox in Atlanta) but the industry as a whole forced movie theaters to get rid of them because film distribution to 3000 theaters for every first run release costs a fortune. The minimum size for a print is about 10,000 ft of the same sort of 35mm film you used to put in cameras. This is not cheap or environmentally friendly.

            Reply
  6. rd

    Re: Tornado Alley

    North America is unique among the major continents. In the middle third of the continent, there are no significant bumps from the Arctic Ocean down to the Gulf of Mexico. There is the Rocky Mountains to the west and the Appalachians to the east, but the central third of the continent is effectively flat as a pancake for thousands of miles. The other continents have east-west cordilleras of mountains (Pyrenees through the Himalayas into the Chinese mountain ranges in Eurasia) or no large north-south plains (S. America) or doesn’t go far enough to the pole (Africa).

    This means there is no physical barrier to Arctic cold dry air meeting up with warm moist Gulf of Mexico air. So the jet stream becomes the determinant in where that interaction occurs and for how long. Climate change impacts on the jet stream as well as warmth and moisture from Gulf of Mexico are be huge players in Mid-West and South-Central US weather.

    Reply
    1. Jeremy Grimm

      Thank you for that insight into the climate in the Midwest regions. What you state suggests that the US may experience more serious problems than some other regions when the Arctic pole melts leaving a dark Arctic sea to absorb heat. With the ice gone, and no longer using heat to melt, the sea waters will warm faster. The fluctuation of the jet stream could become even more powerful and chaotic.

      Reply
  7. The Rev Kev

    “TO INFINITY & BEYOND From ‘young blood’ transfusions to apocalypse insurance – weird ways tech billionaires are trying to live forever”

    I guess that when Steve Jobs bit the bullet at the tender age of only 56, that a lot of fellow tech billionaires got spooked. Who knows for whom the bells toll next? Of course the fact that Jobs ignored medical intervention and used alternated medicine on himself because he was so smart was besides the point. Maybe they should read up on their Shakespeare-

    “By my troth, I care not; a man can die but once; we owe God a death and let it go which way it will he that dies this year is quit for the next”

    Reply
  8. ChiGal in Carolina

    I have made mention of Stephen Porges’s Polyvagal Theory here and this is in the Guardian today. It is focused more on treatment implications for trauma survivors and not so much on the basic science (though he was actually doing basic research which turned out to have therapeutic applications) so I will look for something better but thought I’d pass this on meanwhile.

    https://www.theguardian.com/society/2019/jun/02/stephen-porges-interview-survivors-are-blamed-polyvagal-theory-fight-flight-psychiatry-ace

    Reply
  9. Wukchumni

    Reading through all the campaign money that Duncan Hunter & his wife frittered through on themselves in his indictment and my favorite episode being that the couple would overdraw their account 3x a week, week in-week out for 7 years, ensuing in $38k worth of overdraft fees, was about the most fun i’ve had regarding politicians and just how slimy & useless they can be when all is revealed.

    He’s now justifying a Navy Seal killing an innocent, by claiming that his unit inadvertently killed hundreds of civilians in Iraq, was no biggie. He was merely following orders.

    Reply
    1. Procopius

      As a retired soldier I consider the crime not that he killed an innocent but that he killed a prisoner. We inevitably kill innocents. That’s one of the reasons for the suicide epidemic among veterans. Most people are not like the ones being court martialed for war crimes, and having killed people you realize are innocent is traumatic for them. But killing a prisoner is a crime for good reasons. We do not want to encourage our enemies to casually kill our people who fall into their hands. If Trump pardons these guys he is tarnishing our honor and shitting on our soldiers. Once you have accepted a person as your prisoner honor requires you to care for him as best you can, and protect him from harm. The possibility that Trump might do this enrages me much more than the possibility that Russia “meddled” in our elections.

      Reply
  10. Jesper

    About:

    The Populist Paradox

    The piece has one of the buzz-words of today: Innovation and the piece suggest that innovation will generate jobs. As always then short pieces are skimpy with the details but maybe it is possible to examine it anyway?

    Will innovation lead to increased productivity? If so, then less people will need to be employed so fewer jobs.
    Will innovation lead to decreased productivity? If so, why is it something we would want? Do we want to go back using shovels instead of machinery?
    Maybe innovation is about creating something new, something we didn’t realise we need? But if we don’t know that we need it is the need real? Would it not be more accurate to call it a want? A want of something to consume and then discard? Is that what will save the environment, more consumption of things we do not need?

    This quote from the piece probably clarifies for whom it was written:

    A concerted push to strengthen the infrastructure for science can both boost productivity and create the basis for more widely shared prosperity.

    If prosperity is to be shared then the basis for that sharing is collective bargaining so anything and everything else, including the snake-oil of ‘innovation’, is recommended to be tried first so that defenders of liberal democracy can remain in power.

    Reply
    1. tegnost

      Yes, I read this side by side with Nader and was stricken by the contrasts
      Johnson here…
      ” Trump seems intent on disrupting the US economy by prosecuting a full-scale trade war with China. Ordinarily, you might expect this to hurt him with voters who care about access to export markets – such as America’s highly productive farmers. Instead, Trump’s support seems to be holding up across rural areas, as well as other parts of his electoral base.”
      vs. Nader
      “The unknown and unrecognized people who harvest our food are on the lowest rung of the income ladder despite the critical role they play in our lives. Near the top of the income ladder are people who gamble on the prices of food via the commodities market and those who drain the nutrients out of natural foods and sell the junk food that remains, with a dose of harmful additives. Agribusiness tycoons profit from this plunder.”

      Johnsons “productive farmer” would in my view have to be Archer Daniels Midland or some such, an economic model where 3 humans can farm 10.000 acres because they dump tons of poison on it, rely on complicated patent protected machinery and etc… and gain massive subsidies for things like ethanol

      I guess I tend towards Nader’s view

      Reply
    2. Oregoncharles

      I thought the piece was utterly dependent on the Confidence Fairy to promote groaf and, supposedly, jobs (and why would it?) I really thought Johnson was better than that.

      Reply
      1. flora

        Johnson is probably talking his new book – “Jump-Starting America: How Breakthrough Science Can Revive Economic Growth and the American Dream.” – co-authored with economist Jonathan Gruber. Yes, that Jonathan Gruber.

        https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/marc-thiessen-thanks-to-jonathan-gruber-for-revealing-obamacare-deception/2014/11/17/356514b2-6e72-11e4-893f-86bd390a3340_story.html

        I’m surprised Simon Johnson would co-author a work with an economist who admitted to lying, but the more rarefied reaches of academia are apparently a different world… or maybe it’s just the economics department. ;)

        Reply
    3. Jeremy Grimm

      I couldn’t read the link too closely. It was too heavily laced with the Kool-Aid and I started getting itchy and angry and had to drop off. What I read and scanned didn’t convey a coherent pattern of thought that I felt could be argued for or against.

      Reply
  11. Pookah Harvey

    From the Simon Johnson article “The Populist Paradox” Project Syndicate

    The only way to break this cycle (of populism) is with policies that go to the heart of the issue – creating more good jobs where they are needed. In the case of the US, Jon Gruber and I, in our book Jump-Starting America, propose boosting public funding of research and development, and creating new innovation hubs around the country. R&D creates new ideas and products, and such innovation consistently supports economic growth.

    China has been on this track for a decade or more. Landlocked cities such as Guizhou and Chengdu are among the 17 tech hubs designated by Beijing to spur innovation and transition the country into a tech powerhouse. All these cities are following the blueprint laid out by Shenzhen. To get an idea of the competition the US is up against here is a Bloomberg video report that, at least to me, is an eye-opener.
    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/videos/2019-05-23/the-people-s-republic-of-the-future-video

    Reply
  12. The Rev Kev

    “Hillary Clinton Testing Hollywood Waters With Planned Production Company & Studio Deal”

    Maybe Hillary could make a film about a plucky young SecState landing under fire in a Bosnian airport only to see a young flower girl called Kenninsky cut down by sniper fire. Shouting “Oh my God – they killed Kenninsky. You B******!”, she grabs an assault rifle from her bodyguard to take on the snipers herself. Should be quite the blockbuster that.

    Reply
    1. Hepativore

      The biopic would get really interesting with Hillary Clinton in her Goldwater Girl phase as a spirited Young Republican in light of how Clintonites were accusing Sanders of being racist and misogynistic. Compare what Sanders was doing during that era. In many ways, the leadership of the Democratic Party have become Goldwater-era Republicans now that neoliberalism holds sway over both political parties.

      Reply
  13. Roger Smith

    Clinton has finally found the Third Way (TM)! If you cannot beat Trump, do your best to emulate him. First buy yourself quick access to a hollywood studio with all the gear and expertise you need to… second, film and air your own reality shows and hell, cooking shows as well. Three, PROFIT! By losing again because none of this stuff matters.

    Reply
  14. Wukchumni

    Death And Resurrection In North Korea (Updated) Moon of Alabama
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    I’ll admit I was mystified when a Nork undermensch ended up being the second coming, but the Sith Lord works in mysterious ways & Yahweh don’t.

    Reply
  15. PeakBS

    Still find it hard to believe NC hasn’t split out a Links list to the poster child of all that is wrong with Silicon Valley, Wall Street, regulatory capture of pretty much every regulator they deal with, green washing, bullshit “progressive” virtue signaling . . . etc etc etc

    “Months before the April fire, the sprinkler heads were clogged and coated at least an inch thick of paint and clear-coat,” according to Kolodny’s sources.

    Yet another incredible article.

    Tesla Air Quality Compliance Violations Center On Troubled Paint Shop
    New air quality violations confirm reports that fires and equipment trouble at Tesla’s paint shop has led to non-compliance and unpermitted pollution.

    https://www.thedrive.com/tech/28339/tesla-air-quality-compliance-violations-center-on-troubled-paint-shop

    Reply
    1. Wukchumni

      Probably my favorite Lee Marvin song…

      From: Paint Your Wagon

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NTymtAbaG08

      p.s.

      How do we know that Elon wasn’t reincarnated?

      Kreuger’s financial empire has been described by one biographer as a Ponzi scheme, based on the supposedly fantastic profitability of his match monopolies. However, in a Ponzi scheme early investors are paid dividends from their own money or that of subsequent investors. Although Kreuger did this to some extent, he also controlled many legitimate and often very profitable businesses, and owned banks, real estate, a gold mine, and pulp and industrial companies, besides his many match companies. Many of them have survived to this day. Kreuger & Toll, for example, was composed of bona fide businesses, and there were others like it. Another biographer called Kreuger a “genius and swindler”, and John Kenneth Galbraith wrote that he was the “Leonardo of larcenists”. Kreuger’s financial empire collapsed during the Great Depression.

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ivar_Kreuger

      Reply
    2. Jen

      Why am I not surprised?

      “Tesla had failed to obtain the necessary Permit To Operate for 15 emissions sources and four abatement systems installed as part of its 2015 revamp of North Paint, and had failed to perform required particulate emissions tests on three of those sources (all spray booths) and the E-Scrub systems that were supposed to abate their overspray. With the e-Scrub system shut off due to fire risk, overspray began to collect in the shop’s ductwork and damaged the thermal oxidizer, leading to an “informational” source test that showed the oxidizer was letting through Precursor Organic Compounds through the abatement device at a rate above the permitted limit. Conveniently, however, Tesla hadn’t maintained records related to the temperature at which it was operating that oxidizer, raising now-impossible-to-answer questions about its actual POC destruction rate.”

      Can we make them give back their pollution credits? Hahahahahaha….yeah, never mind.

      Reply
  16. Tomonthebeach

    Trump Administration Considered Tariffs on Australia

    Will somebody give Trump a new toy to play with? The metaphor that if the only tool you have is a hammer, the world becomes a nail – seems to apply.

    Reply
    1. Foy

      Thanks Wukchumni I hadn’t heard this concert, his voice is just brilliant as well as his songs, I just love all the acoustic songs from the 60s 70s, they dont write them like that any more

      Reply
  17. Wukchumni

    My status on the do-not-call list being perfunctory, as in the shields are down, I can either answer that ‘unknown name’ on the other end or let it ring. I enjoy messing with people messing with me and its fun telling that voice far away asking for her, that, sorry my wife was deported to North Korea, and she can be reached @ PYOnyang 5836 if they want to get in touch, or in the lapse before somebody from the subcontinent speaks from a prepared script, I calmly tell him that the results are in, and he has Chlamydia, and whatever you do, don’t eat any curry in the future, as there could be horrible side-effects.

    But I feel spent, and would prefer to have my force-field back, where they can’t bother me.

    Reply
  18. boz

    Gene Editing

    CRISPR-Cas9 babies likely to die earlier, Berkeley study says Deutsche Welle

    He Jiankui had justified his germline intervention with the fact that the father of the children carried the HI virus (HIV), which triggers the immunodeficiency disease AIDS. He claims that his intention was to make the children immune to HIV through the genome editing.

    And this is how He proceeded: HIV uses a cell protein encoded by a specific gene called CCR5 to attack cells of the immune system. Using the CRISPR-Cas9 gene scissors, the biophysicist removed the CCR5 gene from the genome before implanting the embryo in order to prevent a potential infection of the children with HIV.

    Only problem is, removing CCR5 turns out to be deleterious to life expectancy…

    The biophysicist argued that there are many people who naturally do not carry a CCR5 gene in their genome. There are an estimated 100,000 people with this mutation, called Delta 32, in the world.

    […]

    The researchers found that people with a twofold Delta 32 mutation, who completely lack CCR5, have a 21 percent lower probability of reaching 76 years of age than those with no or only one Delta 32 mutation.

    This is probably due to the fact that the CCR5 gene is important for human health. Removing it may make patients susceptible to other diseases. It is a functional protein that has an effect on the organism, Nielsen stressed in a Berkeley University statement.

    Not so much oops as duh.

    Society needs to leash science..not the other way around.

    Reply
  19. Olga

    In a Blow to Maduro, Russia Withdraws Key Defense Support to Venezuela WSJ
    The article is pay-walled, but the headline did not sit with me…
    So, here is a different take:
    https://sputniknews.com/world/201906031075572338-russian-advisers-in-venezuela-claims/
    “Russian Ambassador to Venezuela Vladimir Zaemsky has refuted reports about the withdrawal of Russian military specialists from the Latin American country. “This is another piece of ‘news’ which has absolutely nothing to do with reality. Work is being carried out in accordance with existing obligations, and there is no talk of any cuts,” Zaemsky said on Monday.”
    Not all is gold that glitters…

    Reply
  20. mpalomar

    Curiosity piqued, I wondered how Finland was miraculously creating housing for the homeless but the article from the Guardian, It’s a miracle…, never breaks down the financial mechanism funding The Y Foundation and Housing First. The best they can do is, “Finland has spent €250m creating new homes” and “Helsinki owns 60,000 social housing units; one in seven residents live in city-owned housing. It also owns 70% of the land within the city limits, runs its own construction company… & public-sector planning and collective effort ”

    Is it a public/ private scheme, or a billionaire’s pet foundation project? It seems not, the Y foundation site lists a coalition of entities mainly Finnish cities, construction trade union, the Red Cross, a mental health group and (CFCI) the Confederation of Finnish Construction Industries RT. “CFCI is the joint interest organisation of building contractors, special contractors and the construction product industry.”

    Indeed it is interesting that Finland has found a way to be the only European country reducing homelessness but the Guardian should really do a better job of ‘splaining such an important and relevant miracle in our troubled world, though miracles of course are typically shrouded in mystery.

    Reply
    1. lordkoos

      A couple of years ago I saw a mind-boggling front page headline in The Seattle Times, which in large font read, “More Homes, The Solution To Homelessness?” It was so stupid that I could barely believe it. Two years later, homeless encampments litter the city in even greater numbers.

      Reply
      1. Wukchumni

        Ever seen any homeless encampments that weren’t total squalor?

        I did. In Visalia a few years ago an encampment of around 3 dozen tents popped up and I went and had a look. 34 of the domiciles were filthy mc nasty, I wouldn’t dare go into one of their tents, no sirreebob.

        Tents 17 & 18 were different though, there was pride in their surroundings, everything was tidy and neat, and what set it off, was old glory atop a 12 foot high pole with a concrete pedestal anchoring it below, in front of their ‘home’

        Reply
        1. ambrit

          That’s because the phenomenon of “homelessness” once was confined to the less well off, mentally and physically, of our population. Now it is consuming the bottom layers of the once safe “thrifty poor.” Next up, lower middle class tent cities on the Anacostia Flats.

          Reply
  21. crittermom

    >”What Can You, the Individual, Do to Fight Air Pollution”

    When I read the header my first thought was, “Duct tape Trump’s mouth shut!”

    Seriously, I did read the article. I’m not sure I’m in agreement with turning off your vehicle engine if you’re stopped for more than 20 seconds, however. I strongly suspect that is NOT good for your engine, despite what they may have you believe.

    Most of the other ideas I think the majority of us know (walk, bike…).
    I was looking forward to more suggestions regarding wastewater, but it didn’t elaborate on that.

    Therefore, I saw it as only an ‘eh’ story.
    Still thinking my initial idea was a good one. ;-)

    Reply
    1. Lepton1

      The article lists a number of well known ideas. Switching to LEDs is easy and very helpful. Buying a new refrigerator if yours is more than about 15 years old would be good.

      Unless your car is really old I don’t think it would hurt to switch off the engine rather than letting it idle for long. All hybrids do this, so do many newer cars.

      My wife composts all kitchen scraps. Easy to do. I bicycle any place less than 5 miles away if the weather isn’t horrible.

      It’s good to do this on our own, we need to have things like this mandated to be really effective.

      Reply
    2. wilroncanadaw

      crittermom
      I’ve seen lineups of 20 vehicles and more (half of them pickup trucks) at Starbucks or Tim Hortons drive-thru lanes here in small town southern Vancouver Island. The pollution purveying drivers could easily have parked, walked into the shops and been back out in their vehicles in half the time, probably 5 minutes as compared with 15 or 20 pumping out their smog.
      I DO like your original response: duct tape. I’ve used one of those expensive but effective brands (gorilla tape); it would do nicely.

      Reply
  22. crittermom

    >”I’ve seen lineups of 20 vehicles and more… ”

    That would disgust me, as well. Not to mention, I suspect many of them could use the exercise?

    I rarely go out to eat but when I do I park, go inside (& then order it to go).

    I fully understand about conserving.
    I lived off-grid for almost twenty years–on only 408 watts of solar panels! (eight 51 watt panels) after installing my system in the early ’90’s–until the banksters stole my humble home.
    How many readers would be willing to live on that?

    Since being forced into an apt in a city, composting is no longer an option.
    But I still stock up on groceries like I previously did, so my car still remains parked for weeks at a time.
    It’s old, so turning it on & off is not a good option.
    But if I’m stuck for more than a couple minutes, I do turn it off.

    I was using low energy bulbs when they still required an adapter to fit a regular socket (before LED’s)

    Yes. With only 408 watts, you learn to conserve, yet I had modern conveniences like a computer, microwave, TV (for movies), stereo, DVD & CD players, washer, power tools.
    I learned to do the energy-sucking activities when the sun was up.

    I have even been known to turn off lights or a TV not being used while visiting friends!
    I still use a hand crank can opener.
    I got composting toilets approved in my county back in ’92 or ’93.

    Since doing so myself, I’ve thought that if EVERYONE had to live just one year with such limited power, they would understand just how much energy they use & hopefully that would instill in them new habits to then automatically conserve.
    That alone would make a difference.
    Combined with other measures, we could still stand a chance to salvage our planet. Maybe.

    Many people think they need to install many thousands of watts of panels to live.
    Wrong answer. Everyone needs to learn to conserve in their everyday usage.

    But alas, come Christmas, I’ve no doubt we’ll once again see numerous ads for electronic, useless ‘convenience’ items pushed as gifts.
    And consumers will gobble ’em up. *palm to forehead*

    BTW, you’re probably right about the gorilla tape.
    I’ve heard it’s even stronger. ;-)

    Reply

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