- The Quiet Revolt among Democrats led by Bernie Sanders.
- The world of threats to the US is an illusion.
- Deaths from Guns, Cars, and Drugs.
- The advertising glut that will crash the social media industry.
- Two books and two films I highly recommend.
(1) The Quiet Revolt among Democrats led by Bernie Sanders
The Left is also rebelling against its political leaders: “Bernie Sanders: The Quiet Revolt” by Simon Head at the NY Review of Books. The amazing fact about early 21st century US politics is that the leaders of both political parties advocate policies largely repugnant to many or most of their members.
While the GOP’s has produced powerful insurgents who get the most attention, the similar gap in the Democratic Party appears to have grown sufficiently wide to support a strong protest candidate. Sanders does not appear to excite the minority groups, an essential component of the Democratic voting bloc, he has proved the weakness of the Party establishment (much as the defeats of McCain and Romney did to the GOP establishment). This might attract other and more powerful insurgents.
(2) The world of threats to the US is an illusion
A few people dare call “bulls**t” on the fear-mongerers that dominate the US media and leadership: “The world of threats to the US is an illusion” by Stephen Kinzer (visiting fellow at Brown), op-ed in The Boston Globe.
Michael Cohen said something similar in January: “Are threats to US bigger than ever? No“. Perhaps more Americans will realize that our national security leaders are lying to us about the magnitude of the threats facing us today, as they have so often in the past …
- How the Soviet Menace was over-hyped – and what we can learn from this.
- Government officials’ lies erode the Republic’s foundation. Do we care?
- The Big List of Lies by our Leaders. Post it everywhere to change America.
(3) Deaths from Guns, Cars, and Drugs
“Guns vs. Cars (and Drugs)” by Robert VerBruggen at RealClearPolicy. The death rate from guns is flat, that from cars is dropping, and the rate from drug overdoses is skyrocketing — and now higher than the other two. This is a stunning demonstration of journalists’ inability to report the news, keeping us blind.
(4) The advertising glut that will crash the social media industry
“The Advertising Bubble” by Maciej Cegłowski. He tells the story with clever graphics.
“There’s an ad bubble. It’s gonna blow. … Investors are herd animals. When they bolt, the adtech swamp will drain, and who knows what hideous monstrosities will be left flopping on its muddy bottom.
The problem is not that these companies will fail (may they all die in agony), but that the survivors will take desperate measures to stay alive as the failure spiral tightens. These companies have been collecting and trafficking in our most personal data for many years. It’s going to get ugly.
The only way I see to avert disaster is to reduce the number of entities in the swamp and find a way back to the status quo ante, preferably through onerous regulation. But nobody will consider this.
The prognosis for publishers is grim. Repent! Find a way out of the adtech racket before it collapses around you. Ditch your tracking, show dumb ads that you sell directly (not through a thicket of intermediaries), and beg your readers for mercy. Respect their privacy, bandwidth, and intelligence, flatter their vanity, and maybe they’ll subscribe to something.
For more about this see The advertising glut dooms the social media industry.
(5) Two books & two films I strongly recommend
See the reviews..
- I have discussed “Closing of the American Mind” a hundred times, but never reviewed it. Read it to understand America today – how we got here, where we’re going.
- “Disasters & Climate Change”, an important new book illuminating the debate.
- Kingsman: a mirror too disturbing for critics.
- Pacific Rim‘s Monster-sized Fun.