- Green Autarky: Self Sufficiency Against the Growth Based Model of Industrial Capitalism, by Robin Monotti Graziadei, The Wrong Kind of Green, Blog
- Ignore flawed Fraser Institute report, Canadians get a good deal on taxes, by Alan Freeman, iPolitics
- Scientific Consensus, Wikipedia
- We Tried to Do Vanlife Right. It Broke Us Down., by Chris Wright, Outside Online
- After Two Years Off-Grid, I’m Embracing Daily Letters, Good Sleep and My DIY Hot Tub, by Mark Boyle, Medium—The Guardian
- (Why) We Should Think of Greed as a Form of Insanity, by Umair Haque, Medium—Eudaimonia
"Greed Isn’t Good. It’s a Mental Pathology That Destabilizes People, Societies, Economies, and Democracies."
And all the money in the world wouldn't be enough to satisfy this greed.
- Magic grannies are stopping Cuba going hungry , by Anastasia Miari, The Economist
"At a time of food shortages, the country is relying on the time and ingenuity of its matriarchs."
- Debunking Canadian health care myths, by Rhonda Hackett, Denver Post
- Self-Driving Cars Won’t Save Us, by Alison Gauss, Medium
"Better solutions are right in front of our eyes."
- Tesla is Not “Sustainable”, or What People Get Wrong About Sustainability, by John Katsos, Medium— Environment
- Aliens in our midst, by Douglas Fox, Aeon
The New Fascism, and Antifa
I hear a lot of well educated people saying that the people some of us are calling fascists don't really meet all the criteria for being "real" fascists. Others have even accused us of calling anyone we disagree with a fascist. I predict that a few decades from now those same people will be saying they wish they hadn't been quite so fussy with their definitions, and had acted sooner to oppose these "new fascists", even if they weren't identical to the fascists of the twentieth century.
- What the Fascist Told Me, by Wyatt Edward Gates, Medium
The simple truth from a self-professed fascist.
- Seven things you need to know about Antifa, by Seriously..., BBC Radio 4
- Media for the many, Taylor Scollon, Geoff Sharpe, The Cable
"The Cable is a media network with a mission to advance progressive ideas."
The link is to The Cable's "About" page. Check out their "Shows" page for content. You have to get into it a bit before it becomes obvious that this is an antifa website
- I Survived the Warsaw Ghetto. Here Are the Lessons I’d Like to Pass On., by Stanisław Aronson, Pocket—The Guardian
"I’m 93, and, as extremism sweeps across Europe, I fear we are doomed to repeat the mistakes which created the Holocaust."
The Amazon is Burning
- Amazon Rainforest Fires: Here’s What’s Really Happening, by Alexandria Symonds, The New York Times
- The Real Reason the Amazon Is On Fire, by Zoe Sullivan, Time
- The Amazon Is Not Earth’s Lungs, by Peter Brannen, The Atlantic
Burning the Amazon is not likely to have much effect on the amount of oxygen in our atmosphere. Perhaps more effect on the CO2 concentration, though, and that's what causing climate change.
- The Amazon Cannot Be Recovered Once It’s Gone, by Robinson Meyer, The Atlantic
"The fires blazing in Brazil are part of a larger deforestation crisis, accelerated by President Jair Bolsonaro."
- Brazil’s Bolsonaro on the Environment, in His Own Words, by Mariana Simões, Medium—The New York Times
"With criticism mounting on the policies of Brazil’s president, he has promised to combat fires raging in the Amazon. But he has long supported scaling back protections for the rainforest."
- Some of the most-shared images of the Amazon rainforest fires are old or are not of the Amazon, by Paul P. Murphy, CNN
- Reverse Image Search Could Halt Misleading Amazon Fire Photos, by Kalev Leetaru, Forbes
- Why everything will collapse, by The 4th Monkey, YouTube
- Wall Street Gears Up For Onslaught Of Oil & Gas Bankruptcies, Yahoo Finance/OilPrice.com/ZeroHedge
- Debunking ‘Lower Oil Supply Will Raise Prices’, by Gail Tverberg, Our Finite World
As always, Gail has some deep insights here.
- The $30-billion exodus: Foreign oil firms keep bailing on Canada's energy sector, by Kevin Orland, Bloomberg News/Financial Post
"The drumbeat of exits, rare for such a stable oil-producing country, adds an extra layer of gloom for an industry that accounts for about a fifth of Canada's exports"
- The wheels come off shale oil, by Kurt Cobb, Resource Insights
- Blame climate change for record water levels in the Great Lakes: prof, by Jeremiah Rodriguez, CVT News
- Trees Could Change the Climate More Than Scientists Thought, by Gabriel Popkin and Quanta, The Atlantic
"A growing body of research suggests that models of the warming world have underestimated a crucial ingredient: vegetation."
- When a Killer Climate Catastrophe Struck the World's Oceans, by Peter Brannen, The Atlantic—Science
Economic Contraction and Growing Inequality
- Wages Are Low and Workers Are Scarce. Wait, What?, by Annie Lowrey, Medium—Atlantic
The author is missing the effects of the decreasing surplus energy situation—which are similar to lower productivity, but stem from what amounts to increased energy cost and result in reduced growth rates.
Hazard and Risk
- Fallacies of Risk, by Sven Ove Hansson, Philosophy Unit, Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Sweden
- Why synthetic chemicals seem more toxic than natural ones, by Niranjana Krishnan, Aeon
Before jumping to the erroneous conclusion that this section was paid for by Monsanto, stop for a moment and understand that organic agriculture/food is a multi-billion dollar per year industry that relies on fear to get people to buy its product. Millions of dollars are being spent to convince you that non-organic food is dangerous. In fact both conventionally grown and organic foods are equally safe. Sadly neither method of agriculture is even remotely substainable.
- Five lies told by Carey Gillam, by Stephan Neidenbach, Medium
- Hogwash! A review of Whitewash by Carey Gillam, by Mary Mangan, Biology Fortified Blog
- Three Myths About Organic Food, by Fueled by Science, Medium—Food
Listen to your mother and eat your veggies—organic or not.
- Vegans, you’re not saving the planet, by Z_Apostrophe, Medium—Food
- I Had to Start Eating Meat Again for Medical Reasons, and Now I’m Questioning Everything, by Rachel Inberg, Medium—Health
- Processing Willow Bark for Cordage, by Jonathan Ridgeon, Jon's Bushcraft
- 2-ply Cordage Making Techniques, by Jonathan Ridgeon, Jon's Bushcraft
- Make Willow Bark Cordage, by Far North Bushcraft And Survival, YouTube
- How To Make Natural Cordage From Cedar Bark, by Zed Outdoors, YouTube
- Shaped on all six sides, by Kat Gardiner, Aeon
"Building a boat, plank by plank, is like giving life to an inanimate object "
- Elizabeth Warren Sells Populism to Professionals, by Benjamin Wallace-Wells, The New Yorker
- Why Do Canadians Say ‘Eh’?, by Dan Nosowitz, Pocket—Atlas Obscura
- 15 Obscure Words for Everyday Feelings and Emotions, by Paul Anthony Jones, Pocket—Mental Floss
- The College Student Who Decoded the Data Hidden in Inca Knots, by Katherine Davis-Young, Pocket—Altlas Obscura
Dancing on Graves
For those that object to speaking ill of the dead, I'll just say that I hope David Koch is soon reunited with his brother.
- David Koch, a Bad Man, Has Died, by Jack Mirkinson, Splinter News
- David Koch, Billionaire Conservative Financier And Industrialist, Dead At 79, by Paul Blumenthal, Huff Post
- Even David Koch’s Philanthropy Was Toxic, by Jeet Heer, The Nation
"Like other plutocrats, from Andrew Carnegie to Jeff Bezos, the late billionaire used charity to legitimize inequality."
- David Koch Got What He Paid For, by John Nichols, The Nation
"The late Koch brother bought influence using PACs and other proxies. A prank call to Scott Walker revealed the truth about how the Kochs had their way with Republican politicians."
- Today in Scotland the UK’s fractures are widening, by Adam Ramsay, Open Democracy
These are of such importance that I've decide to leave them here on an ongoing basis.
- Debunking, Wikipedia
- Pseudoscience, Wikipedia
- List of topics characterized as pseudoscience, Wikipedia
- Rational Wiki
- Science Based Medecine
- Snopes, debunks or validates urban legends
- Bad Astronomy
- The Skeptics Society
Science Based Medicine
- The Message of Measles, by Nick Paumgarten, The New Yorker
"As public-health officials confront the largest outbreak in the U.S. in decades, they’ve been fighting as much against dangerous ideas as they have against the disease."
“It’s shocking how strong the anti-vax movement is,” Zucker said. “What surprises me is the really educated people who are passionately against vaccinations. I see this as part of a larger war against science-based reality. We need to study vaccine hesitancy as a disease.”
My thought is that it's not a matter of "believing" or "not believing" in vaccines, but one of acknowledging the facts—they do work and they do not pose a significant risk.
Lacking an Owner's Manual
The human body/mind/spirit doesn't come with an owner's manual, and we continually struggle to figure out how best to operate them.
- No, Men Are Not Naturally Violent, by Elle Beau, Medium—Inside Elle Beau
"And all humans are hardwired for connection."
- Men Can Have Better Friendships. Here's How, by Julia Furlan, NPR
- Men Have No Friends and Women Bear the Burden, a Twitter thread by "Cousin Pookie"
- Men Have No Friends and Women Bear the Burden, by Melanie Hamlett, Harpers Bazaar
"Toxic masculinity—and the persistent idea that feelings are a 'female thing'—has left a generation of straight men stranded on emotionally-stunted island, unable to forge intimate relationships with other men. It's women who are paying the price."
- Middle-Aged Men Need More Friends, On Point on WBUR
"Men and friendship. By middle age, many have too little of it. And it’s a threat to men’s health."
- The Shy Person’s Guide to Winning Friends and Influencing People, by Michael Thompson, Medium—Forge
"Kindness is a superpower"
There is No God, and Thou Shall Have No Other Gods
I don't think I've made any secret of the fact that I am an atheist, but I may not have made it clear that I think any sort of worship is a bad thing and that believing in things is to be avoided whenever possible. Indeed, I do not believe in belief itself. That's what the "Thou shall have no other gods" is about—it's not enough to quit believing in whatever God or Gods you were raised to believe in, but also we must avoid other gods, including material wealth, power and fame.
- Children Raised Without Religion Are Kinder And More Empathetic, Study Finds, by Adam Goldberg, Anon News
"...there is certainly something to be said for how religious parents tend to have a more authoritarian parenting style, which undoubtedly causes these anti-social personality traits."
Poverty, Homeless People, Minimum Wage, UBI, Health Care, Housing
- This Company Hired Anyone Who Applied. Now It’s Starting a Movement., by Eillie Anzilotti, Pocket—Fast Company The company’s slogan reads “we don’t hire people to bake brownies, we bake brownies to hire people.”
- The New American Homeless, by Brian Goldstone, The New Republic
"Housing insecurity in the nation’s richest cities is far worse than government statistics claim. Just ask the Goodmans."
I would say that if you aren't a capitalist, then the justification for starting a company (which of course would be a co-operative) would be to meet a public need while earning a living for the workers. And of course you wouldn't want to externalize costs that then end up being a burden on society.
Automation and Jobs
- Self-Driving Trucks Won’t Kill Millions of Jobs, by Paris Marks, Medium—OneZero
- The Problem With Autonomous Cars That No One’s Talking About, by Jasper Dekker, Fast Company
"Autonomous cars need to learn how to drive like a local"
- 21 Lessons for the 21st Century , by Yuval Noah Harari
This book starts out talking about the changes that will be forced on us by advances in biotechnology and artificial intelligence. Some might say the author is technophobic, but I'd say he is just the opposite—naively buying into the claims being made by the cheerleaders in those fields. I'd say the problems we'll face will result not from the unbridled success of biotech and AI, but from their failure to deliver as expected.
As the book goes on, though, he gets into territory where he actually knows what he's talking about, and that part of it is definitely worth reading.