You should read this for 4/8/2018:
Art and Film
Once again, this is why expecting automated filters to work is a real problem — and it’s doubly obnoxious that companies like Universal Pictures (and the MPAA that represents it) have been among the leading voices calling for more internet filters and things like “notice and staydown” which would effectively be used to block even more such content. Hopefully, Universal/YouTube restore Sauer’s video soon, but it’s just another example of how copyright is frequently used to take down perfectly legitimate speech.
Books, Writing, and Language
In the clips here, you can listen to Tolkien himself read from The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit, including a recording at the top of him reading one of the fantasy languages he invented, then created an entire world around, the Elvish tongue Quenya in the poem “Namarie.” Some of these YouTube clips have received their own cinematic treatment, in a YouTube sort of way, like the video below with a montage of Tolkien-inspired media and a dramatic score. This may or may not be to your liking, but the origin story of the recording deserves a mention.
The British Library Exhibition Writing: Making Your Mark Scroll down for the online supplements.
Everyone deserves to be seen.
Everyone deserves to be a main character.
Let’s save the shadows for the cowards.
They know who they are.
Food and Drink
History and Archaeology
About 60,000 well-preserved artifacts tell what life was like at Agaligmiut before the massacre. The artifacts include dolls, figurines, wooden dance masks and grass baskets.
Science and Nature
Physicians Get Addicted Too “Lou Ortenzio was a trusted West Virginia doctor who got his patients—and himself—hooked on opioids. Now he’s trying to rescue his community from an epidemic he helped start.”
Via The Guardian; an interview: My life as JT LeRoy: Savannah Knoop on playing the great literary hoaxer
China’s hi-tech war on its Muslim minority “Smartphones and the internet gave the Uighurs a sense of their own identity – but now the Chinese state is using technology to strip them of it.”
China’s version of the “war on terror” depends less on drones and strikes by elite military units than facial recognition software and machine learning algorithms. Its targets are not foreigners but domestic minority populations who appear to threaten the Chinese Communist party’s authoritarian rule. In Xinjiang, the web of surveillance reaches from cameras on buildings, to the chips inside mobile devices, to Uighurs’ very physiognomy. Face scanners and biometric checkpoints track their movements almost everywhere.
Twitter shuts down 5,000 pro-Trump bots retweeting anti-Mueller report invective “Bots were tied to account formerly used for pro-Saudi messaging.”
Buy me a Coffee! If you find this post or this site interesting, and would like to see more, buy me a coffee. While I may actually buy coffee, I’ll probably buy books to review.
Twitter has suspended over 5,000 accounts tied to a network amplifying a message denouncing the report by Special Counsel Robert Mueller as a “RussiaGate hoax.” According to a researcher, the accounts—most of which had only posted three or four times in the past—were connected to other accounts previously used to post pro-Saudi messages.
There have always been people who want to make themselves feel better by making others feel worse, to boost their egos and online footprints by driving people away. Disproportionately, their targets have been women, people of color, and the LGBTQ community. For many—for me—”trolls” have always been terrifying.
Google employees reveal the hidden costs of speaking out ,<blockquote”Retaliation isn’t always obvious,” Whittaker and Stapleton wrote. “It’s often confusing and drawn out, consisting of icy conversations, gaslighting, project cancellations, transition rejections, or demotions. Behavior that tells someone the problem isn’t that they stood up to the company, it’s that they’re not good enough and don’t belong.”
The Black Feminists Who Saw the Alt-Right Threat Coming “Before Gamergate, before the 2016 election, they launched a campaign against Twitter trolls masquerading as women of color. If only more people had paid attention.”
💩🔥💰 Trumpery 💩🔥💰
He remains puzzled, he writes, about the sheer volume of seemingly unnecessary lies that emanated from Trump world, and notes that his investigation was stymied by lying witnesses, deleted evidence, and the sheer complexity of investigating shadowy entities and people beyond the reach of US law enforcement. As Mueller phrased it, “While this report embodies factual and legal determinations that the Office believes to be accurate and complete to the greatest extent possible, given these identified gaps, the Office cannot rule out the possibility that the unavailable information would shed additional light on (or cast in a new light) the events described in the report.”
When Michael Cohen testified before Congress this winter, he made clear how much Donald Trump operated his family business like a mob boss: speaking in code, refusing to have written agreements, prizing loyalty. Mueller’s report is littered with examples that read more like the behavior of a Mafioso than a commander-in-chief, from pushing FBI director James Comey for “loyalty,” to chastising White House counsel Don McGahn for writing down notes, to sending private messages through intermediaries asking for continued silence, to making public attacks on those, like Cohen, who “flipped.” Just because it’s familiar behavior from Trump by now doesn’t make it any less troubling.
‘No women anything’: Trump Fed pick Stephen Moore’s list of misogynistic remarks Economic commentator and former Trump campaign adviser Stephen Moore has a long history of making offensive comments about women
Pay It Forward and Make It Better
Then, in 2017, something unprecedented happened. The New Zealand government granted the Whanganui River legal personhood—a status that is in keeping with the Maori worldview that the river is a living entity. The legislation, which has yet to be codified into domestic law, refers to the river as an “indivisible, living whole,” conferring it “all the rights, powers, duties, and liabilities” of an individual.