Links 12/27/19

William Greider, Journalist Who Focused on Economy, Dies at 83 New York Times. Depicting him as a journalist diminishes his importance. Let us not forget that Marx was a journalist too. I cited a key Greider observation often, that the US operates in a system not of free trade but of managed trade, and other countries have mercantilist objectives, namely seeking to run trade surpluses or at least not deficits so as o boost domestic employment and savings.

Tortoise rescued after setting Great Dunmow house on fire BBC

Why your cat is lousy at chess yet way smarter than even the most advanced AI NextWeb (David L)

The surprisingly complicated physics of why cats always land on their feet ars technica

Her mom was lost in dementia’s fog. Singing Christmas carols brought her back MPR News (Chuck L)

See the Sketches J.R.R. Tolkien Used to Build Middle-Earth Wired (David L)

Scientists Have Officially Found a Mineral Never Before Seen in Nature Science Alert (Kevin W)

Restoring natural forests is the best way to remove atmospheric carbon Nature (David L)

The Northeast warms ahead of rest of USA: ‘Our winters now are not like our winters before’ USA Today (resilc)

Winemakers are Using Cutting-Edge Data and Centuries-Old Wisdom to Combat Climate Change Wine Enthusiast (resilc)

Our pathetically slow shift to clean energy, in five charts MIT Technology Review (David L)

Opinion: Your electric car and vegetarian diet are pointless virtue-signalling in fighting climate change MarketWatch

#travelgram: live tourist snaps have turned solo adventures into social occasions The Conversation (Kevin W)

40 Years Ago, Doctors Vaccinated a Group of Children in Africa. Then Something “Incredible” Happened. Mother Jones

What the World’s Most Controversial Herbicide Is Doing to Rural Argentina Longreads (resilc)

NSW’s Emergency Services Minister David Elliott goes on holiday as fire danger ramps up again

North Korea

North Korea keeps world on edge with promised ‘gift’ to US The Hill


Johnson’s ‘no deal 2.0’ virtue signalling Chris Grey


Opinion: Latin America’s upheaval tips towards chaos DW


Israel’s PM Benjamin Netanyahu claims win in party leadership challenge BBC

New Cold War

Cybercom mulls aggressive tactics if Russia interferes in next election: report The Hill (UserFriendly)

Important Statement by Putin on Russia’s Super Weapons Vineyard of the Saker (resilc)

More than 3 million Russians on the “no fly list” due to unpaid debt Quartz

Record high temperatures cast gloom over festive season in Moscow CNN (resilc)

Big Brother Is Watching You Watch

Colleges are turning students’ phones into surveillance machines, tracking the locations of hundreds of thousands Washington Post (Bob K)

Pilotless drones to be tested in step towards air parcel deliveries Sky News (resilc). If you think they will be used only for deliveries, you are smoking something strong.

Sky shepherds: the farmers using drones to watch their flocks by night Guardian

Imperial Collapse Watch

WaPo’s Afghan Papers Propagate Colonial Narrative of Noble Intentions Gone Awry FAIR (UserFriendly)

Trump Transition

Trump’s holiday menu: handouts for billionaires, hunger for the poor Bernie Sanders and Rashida Tlaib, Guardian

White House Praises Saudi Arabia for Sentencing Five People to Death, Pretending Justice for Jamal Khashoggi Has Been Served Vanity Fair (resilc)


Rachel Maddow rooted for the Steele dossier to be true. Then it fell apart. Washington Post (UserFriendly)


Democratic insiders: Bernie could win the nomination Politico

Q&A: Bernie Sanders says Trump will be hard to beat, but he knows how to do it Los Angeles Times. Lambert thinks Sanders did not do so well, in particular in addressing the concerns of the owner of the LA Times. Thoughts?

Chinese Restaurants Are Closing. That’s a Good Thing, the Owners Say. New York Times (David L)

Polk Sheriff Blasts Amazon for Asking for Subpoena in Amazon Driver Theft Case BayNews9 (JTM)

How power shutoffs are changing California’s way of life Politico (Kevin W)

Americans are retiring to Vietnam. Here’s why Los Angeles Times (fk)

Electric Bikes and Scooters Will Stay Illegal In New York Thanks To Governor Cuomo The Verge. As if that were a bad thing. As a pedestrian, these devices (and Segueys) are a threat to life and limb. Drivers way too often zip up on sidewalks or disregard traffic lights and cut through crosswalks, and graze or even hit people on foot. I’ve seen it first hand.

Guillotine Watch

“OxySacklers” angry that Tufts removed family name from campus ars technica (resilc)

Class Warfare

A homeless person’s guide to homelessness BBC

World’s First 3D Printed Community Minimises Homelessness in Mexico ArchDaily (David L)

Driver training was reportedly too much of “a bottleneck” for Amazon ars technica (Dan K)

How Some Sheriffs Force Their Inmates Into Medical Debt ProPublica (resilc)

Escaping the Inequality-Data Dark Ages Project Syndicate (David L)

Antidote du jour:

And a bonus (Chuck L):

See yesterday’s Links and Antidote du Jour here.

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