Saturday, September 28, 2019

"Techno-Uptopianism" is breaking down because people aren't smart enough for it





Andrew Marantz, in a challenging piece in the Sept. 30, 2017 New Yorker, p. 69, called “The More Things Change: does connecting the world actually make it better?” but called “the Dark Side of Techno Utopianism” on the cover and in the online article.
  
  
He gives a short history of the democratization of information for the masses, most obviously going back to the printing press, but even before in ancient times – and also some attention to English Bible merchant William Caxton.  Centuries later, the Internet became the next iteration of what could amplify the personal asymmetry of speech.
  
He goes give some biography of Mark Zuckerberg and Chris Hughes, and some other people like Christopher Poole. They all wanted absolute connectivity and free speech at first, and even like in 2011 with the Arab Spring some of their ideas were going right.  By 2016 when Trump one, they learned that the life cycle of free speech with all its asymmetries was like the life cycle of an insect or of a star. It had a main sequence. 
   
Much of this has to do with the dangers of asymmetry when hyperindividualism runs away and people who live at a distance and watch others gain too much power by staring at them without any responsibility for them (relativity and quantum theory teach us that). But it also has to do with the change from Web 1.0, search-engine driven in a simple way inviting to amateur speakers, to modern social media, which now have to pretend to be both platforms and publishers, and depend on clickbait for a business model.  The 2016 election showed what happens when too many people are left behind and feel neglected.   We face returning to gatekeepers, or to using new cyclical norms of "social credit". 

Thursday, September 26, 2019

David Rubin apparently gets an interview in Canada "cancelled" after overblown ("communist") claims that his work "radicalizes" extremists (then, does mine??)


David Rubin reports that his invitation to a debate event at Mohawk College in Hamilton, Ontario was rescinded over “threats”, resembling on the surface a situation with the Minds conference in Philadelphia at the end of August.

The Daily Wire reports (Hank Berrier) here about supposed threats from “antifa”.  The Spec says that the college should have declined to host Maxime Bernier because of supposed “Peoples Party” extremism.

I can remember “spying” on (Benjamin Spock’s) Peoples Party of New Jersey in late 1972, and it was indeed very radical, with an undertone of threatening violence. (Note below:  Apparently Bernier is a libertarian speaker after all, note the update.)

David Rubin doesn’t seem to have made a YouTube video about this incident yet, but he made a strong video yesterday about “cancel culture”.

  
This video is a “part 1” so he may intend a “part 2” explaining the cancellation.
  
Tim Pool sees this as a kind of “information warfare”, to spread smears by mob rule in order to prevent debate and cause a collapse that would lead to socialism or outright communism. Note how Tim describes Ford Fischer's work in reply to a charge from the Left that it is "alt-lite.
  
 I've noticed memes and tweets recently from some young adults who think it is cool to "do socialism".  History repeats itself. 
   
 Neil McFarquhar weighs in on the memes issue in the New York Times today.
  
 Update: Sept 27:

 David Rubin describes the cancellation of the college appearance to Tucker Carlson. 


Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Legacy newspapers join in the woke "cancel culture"



An Iowa “dude” raised over $1 million for a charity with a beer gag  for apparently an ambiguous or questionable joke some time ago but recently.

So Carson King finds his reputation tarnished by a (woke) “routine background check” of his “social media posts” for the past eight years.

Timcast weights in.


Apparently the Des Moines Register decided it need to do an investigation.
  
Tim Pool’s story in a long tweet: He also says “Delete your Twitter history. Do it now. Thank me later.”

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

Are journalists also "artists" by definition?



Bostwiki takes on the question, “Are journalists artists?”


The question is provocative because journalists are maligned as not having “skin in the game” (when combat reporters definitely do, and at one time the Army had a journalism corps).
  
Bostwiki (now 27) says, not really. Journalists are technicians.  Look, for example, at the work of Ford Fischer on News2Share, where he films what people really do, without passing judgment on anyone.

But journalists can be artists as a separate occupation or mission.

Monday, September 23, 2019

Arrest of US Army private may have more significance for Internet speech that the media is missing so far


A US Army private at Fort Riley KS has been charged with distributing information on (apparently) building weapons of mass destruction, when apparently a social media or Facebook discussion of a plot that might have been targeting a newsroom was uncovered by the FBI.  Vice Media has a typical story.

It is not, as of this writing, completely clear if this is a UCMJ prosecution or one under normal United States code.


I can recall not only the pulling of the Christchurch “manifesto” (and making possession of it illegal in New Zealand) but also of the shorter El Paso piece (from 8chan).  There were warnings by some bloggers that the last page of the EP manifesto had technical weapons information which should not be published online.

All major social media platforms ban this material, but more out of public pressure and other countries.  With hosted content it is less clear (especially since Charlottesville). 

However, I had never heard that it is a crime for a civilian to post this information online.  There could be a question if the information is classified and passed to the person illegally (I.e., Assange or Chelsea Manning). 

Normally, I am particularly concerned if the mere posting of (previously published and non-classified) information online is a crime (there is a short film, “O.I.”, in DC Shorts which indirectly deals with this problem in the abstract).

For example, in early September 2001, Popular Mechanics published a piece about a flux device that could cause disruption of electronic devices and power grids.  There was not enough information that someone could have built one that would work, but nevertheless the article (one week before 9/11) disappeared. Normally EMP (E1 and E3) is a topic associated with high altitude nuclear weapons, but the topic has not been discussed openly in the mainstream media, leaving the impression that it is a fantasy of conservatives and doomsday preppers.  The entire nation could be at risk if this issues isn’t paid attention to.
  
So this arrest may have significance that the mainstream media has so far missed. Maybe Electronic Frontier Foundation will watch this one.

Sunday, September 22, 2019

"Think Progress" shuts down and re-emerges without most employees; are "independent" media overly dependent on public donations?


The progressive news site Think Progress has suddenly shut down, and then re-emerged (Ross Lincoln, The Wrap) after restructuring of ownership that resulted in laying off most employees. Rachel Frazin has the basic story for The Hill. 
  
  
The Daily Beast has more detailed reporting by San Stein and Gideon Resnick, link
  
Alex Pareene writes that the paper was always doomed (Sept 11) 

There is a general problem that many better-off people would rather speak for themselves (or even run for president) than support other people’s journalism and possibly support more extreme (far Leftist) ideas than what they like. 
  
Truthout often says this, with its aggressive donation drives. 

Friday, September 20, 2019

Appeals court to take up FOSTA lawsuit dismissal; Washington Post suddenly shutters its daily printed commuter express



Attorneys for five plaintiffs (the largest is the Woodhull Foundation in Alexandria, VA) will reissue their suit of the federal government to stop enforcement of FOSTA today, in the DC Circuit Court, trying to overture a dismissal in September 2018 in a lower court on procedural grounds, where a judge ruled the defendants did not face a credible threat of prosecution and had no standing to sue.
  

Plaintiffs are arguing that the law has caused companies to self-censor (hence the lack of threat of prosecution – circularity) and eliminate some services to customers out of fear of unpredictable liability.

Electronic Frontier Foundation has a press release Sept. 18 (link above).

FOSTA is a very disruptive law that is disrupting the climate that has allowed free speech by users over the years, and is leading to discussions of reducing downstream liability protections (Section 230) in other areas, such as related to radicalization.  While that concern has been thought to be related to algorithmic business models based in clickbait, it’s also possible that “free content” contributes to the problem and could become another controversy.
  
Also, the Washington Post abruptly closed down publishing its print Express for Metro commuters after Sept. 12, resulting in layoffs, as explained in many stories.

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

"Bostwiki" gives the history of the (old) Fairness Doctrine



Bostwiki, a journalist in New York City (he says he can see the new WTC from his apartment) explains the Fairness Doctrine, in a six-minute video.
  
  
I don’t recall hearing of the Mayflower Rule, which at one time had prohibited all political discussion on radio, in the days before TV.
  
Most parts of the Fairness Doctrine went away during the Reagan years as cable channels became more prominent and consumers had more choice.  That wasn’t always true;  when I moved from an apartment in Oak Lawn in Dallas to a condo in Pleasant Grove at the beginning of 1985, I found that area didn’t yet have cable. The closest was UHF and PBS. (I remember a night in early 1986 when PBS offered definitive coverage of AIDS as it was at the time, and also kuru, another mystery disease.)

A few provisions, like regarding personal attacks on public figures, didn’t go away until the early 2000’s.
  
Independent news channels on YouTube have grown up in an area where none of these rules matter, but YouTube, as we know, has been demonetizing independent political content on YouTube in favor of older legacy companies that grew up under different rules.
  
Obviously, I, as a Blogger, don’t have a “fairness doctrine” to worry about, but “free content” is becoming a hidden problem underneath the more obvious clickbait issue.  That’s because if may hollow out conventional political participation.

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Activists still claim Internet memes recruit white teens stochastically, as in big Washington Post article


Caitlin Gibson has a rather challenging article in the Washington Post today, “Do you have white teenage sons?  Listen up.  How white supremacists are recruiting boys online.” 
  
The article goes on to talk about memes (Pewdiepie’s favorite art form), deliberately designed to normalize racist attitudes and introduced gradually, stochastically.

I don’t ever encounter this, or if I did, I would ignore it.
  
But I can think back to the early 1950s when I was growing up, in a segregated neighborhood typical of the times.  Think about the children’s books of the times.  “Little Black Sambo”.  Then tigers running in circles until they melt into butter.  It gets worse if I think about kindergarten in the 1949-1950 school year in a private home.  The teacher divided the class into “brownies and elves”.  The elves got to go upstairs and were the privileged ones.  I was a brownie (but I am white).  I got a definite sense that there was a pre-determined social position. Some antique stores probably sell old children's books and boardgames, as no one remembers the connotations of the past, until an activist discovers them. 
  
Umair Haque has called this the idea that some people are “born better” than others.  That could be reinforced by clothing or body appearances as perceived in those times.


So the idea of “meme” may well have come before the Internet.

The article leads to other articles, including raising kids to be “race neutral” may not work anymore.
  
Still, I am aware of plenty of “white” families with teenage sons.  No hint of any problems like this.  The key to avoid Internet misappropriation is activities (church, school, scouts, music, drama, sports, etc) in the same real world that keep some perspective.  My general impression in these families is that teens socialize outside of “race” without any sense of an issue. 
  
The science is simple enough.  If your ancestors lived near the equator, they probably needed darker skin to adapt to the sun. If they were far away in polar areas, they lost pigment (over hundreds of thousands of years and various migrations and mixings) in order to make Vitamin D.  That’s about it. 

Monday, September 16, 2019

More problems with plagiarism and book piracy


The New York Times has talked about academic plagiarism before (from online), especially with respect to fake books, but it has two recent important op-eds.
  
On Sept. 7, Farah Stockman and Carlos Mureithi wrote about the “term paper writing” business overseas, of course checked for by sites like Turnitin. 
  
Today, Richard Conniff touched the pirated book copy business again, with “Steal this Book?  There’s a Price”, where there are a few hundred copies of his own books.  
  
I think about 15 years ago, I heard from a couple teachers that a couple of my own sidebar essays on the legacy “do ask do tell” site had been plagiarized and turned in – that was before I became a sub myself.  I never really did anything about it.  It seems well for persons who turn to writing at mid-life to express their own analysis of something like “the draft v. gays in the military” because they had lived it personally.  Then that expands out.  And especially in the early Web 1.0 days with search engines favoring amateur content because of simpler HTML format, a lot of armchair pundits could do a whole generation’s thinking.  It sounds cool to pretend you’re in the elite – but as social media algorithms come along, the masses get dumber, and fall behind, and we get Trump as president, who does nothing good for integrity.
  
True, the most gifted kids love learning and science and reading for its own sake (take John Fish 101 on YouTube) and sometimes make spectacular contributions (like in the “Science Fair” movie for NatGeo). 
  
But the dropoff is quick, and a huge majority of today’s young adults understand only tribalism, not abstract thinking about principles.
  
Conniff makes the point that consumers have gotten used to content being free (despite the paywalls).  That raises the point that an author who offers content free because he can (and has enough assets from others sources) may be distorting the debate – and may be lowballing the entire system.
  
I’ve been personally concerned with this for some time, the last two years especially, as a problem close in importance to the better understood problem with clickbait.  Both can lead to more radicalization – a concern we never thought about ten years ago.  But now, indeed, we have Trump.
   
I do wonder if we could face a day when books won’t stay listed (as on Amazon) if they don’t maintain some kind of sales performance benchmark, even when POD.  It would make many would-be writers think twice entering the speech world on their own and avoiding conventional “partisan” and “identarian” activism. It sounds all too logical.  The radical Left would love this.

 Update: Sept 17: 

 I would also call attention to the IT Jobs blog (Sept 15) about the effects of California's AB 5 on freelance journalists, who could be "forced" to become employees and be so tethered if they write over a certain volume of articles for one publication.  It would be interesting to wonder if having your own separate blog(s) as I do would become an antidote (I don't live in CA, but could work with a CA publication, conceivably.) 

Sunday, September 15, 2019

8chan testifies before Congress Homeland Security committee, is moderating extremist content during incidents but not quickly enough


Drew Harwell and Timothy McLaughlin describe (in the Washington Post Business section Sunday) former helicopter maintenance man Jim Watkins, now the “face behind” 8chan, cut off by Cloudflare and everyone else after the New Zealand, Poway, and especially El Paso attacks by extremist gunmen who seem steeped particularly in and end-of-world “replacement” ideology.

Yet Watkins claims his site was designed for anyone afraid to talk publicly about anything, including LGBTQ.


It’s also true that tech companies are quick to sever ties with sites when they have the reputation of attracting extremists under the “free speech” mantra when they have been deplatformed by larger sites. 

We saw that with Gab after the Pittsburgh incident – and Gab could not possibly have known in time that the shooter was “going in.”

We saw that fiasco with Subscribestar at the end of 2018.

The combativeness of the new Left – which in a way is very understandable to me – is big on guilt by association.


Thursday, September 12, 2019

Opposing viewpoints debate in USA Today on nuclear power barely masks bigger problem of power grid security and technology dependence



I’ve written a few pieces on the safety and security of the power grid on various platforms, including one on Medium, which was linked to here on Aug 30, 2018.
USA Today sponsored an “opposing viewpoints” debate on whether nuclear power should continue to be used indefinitely as part of a strategy for climate change, with the newspaper agreeing with Sen. Cory Booker, link here.  The article sublinks to the opposing viewpoint. 
  
There seems to be a fundamental disagreement as to whether maintaining a power grid with renewable sources without nuclear is possible. 

One could imagine upscaling the responsibility of homeowners and property owners to provide their own power in a decentralized manner with solar panels and turbines, but those might require more raw materials than are realistic.

Taylor Wilson, the scientist at the University of Nevada who built a proof-of-concept fusion reactor as a teenager, has advocated small underground mini fission reactors as a strategy until fusion is possible.  It appears that such a strategy could make the nation much more immune to possible EMP warfare in the future, even in dealing with enemies like North Korea.

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

CASE Act passes House Judiciary committee, seems to match Senate's, could pass soon



Electronic Frontier Foundation has reported that the House Judiciary Committee has reported out H.R. 2426, the CASE Act, which appears to duplicate the text of S 1273, the CASE Act.  Here is EFF's actual tweet the evening of September 10. 

  
As discussed here previously, the legislation, treating a claim as a “traffic ticket”,  could unintentionally embolden copyright trolls, in a manner reminiscent of Righthaven from 2009-2011.

Particularly troubling is that the Copyright Office would not require pre-registration by a claimant before filing a possibly frivolous or inaccurate claim.

The legislation also appears to preclude consideration of the “willful” intention of the defendant, if read literally.

The legislation could pass relatively quickly.  The Copyright office would have a maximum of one year to establish the small claims office and three years to report back to Congress.

To be sure, the Copyright Office tends to be “conservative” and the hope is that they would announce administration procedures to prevent spam or trolling complaints.

But there would be questions like, could materials posted before the Act went into effect be targeted? 

The liability is indeed the speaker/poster’s (not the host’s as under Section 230), but we’re likely to hear comments from Google, Youtube, Blogger, Automattic/Wordpress, and even regular social media sites like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter in time. (Snapchat doesn't matter because images are ephemeral.) 

I don’t have time right now to find the exact point in the video above where the Judiciary Committee passed the measure, but I believe there was little debate. If somebody knows, please leave a comment.
  
 In August, Katherine Trendacosta at EFF reported on a tangentially related copyright troll that was using extortion on Youtube, story

As I've noted, in the past two years or so (more or less since Charlottesville) we've seen a real pushback on the public's valuation of user-generated content.  There is a real feeling that people should do something else, like use established organizations and protests instead of speaking for themselves.  I've really noticed this. 
   
My own Congressional representative is Dan Beyer Here is what I wrote:
  
“I am quite concerned that the CASE Act would invite copyright trolling and, in practice, put ordinary Internet users at considerable and unpredictable risk of defending themselves from frivolous claims, maybe for pre-existing materials. There seems to be no requirement that the claimant register the item. Can the Copyright office put in administrative procedures to prevent trolling?”

Monday, September 09, 2019

State attorneys-general meet to call more social media regulation to allow more competition


Up to forty state attorneys-general plan to investigate Google (and indirectly YouTube) for anti-competitive behavior, according to a Washington Post front page story by Tony Romm Monday September 9, 2019.
  
There are smaller efforts in states to investigate Facebook and Amazon, as noted toward the end of the article.


States have also been investigating telecom companies, recently suing Sprint and t-Mobile and sometimes (like California) implementing their own network neutrality laws.

Earlier this year, Lior Leser (YouTuberLaw) had filed a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission over possibly collusive behavior by tech and payment processors in an attempt to shut down some “conservative” media outlets and their owners.

The complaints seem varies.  Generally, the business model of allowing users to view content free and upload content without review requires a “clickbait” incentive for advertising to return enough income for a profitable operation.  Much of the issue is that the advertising model doesn’t work without harvesting a lot of consumer information and consumption and viewing habits (a huge expansion on the idea of Nielsen ratings perhaps).  In some cases, this can put some consumers (most of all in authoritarian or lawless countries) in danger.  But moreover, the model tends, however unintentionally, to lead to radicalization (especially toward to alt-right) of some vulnerable users, especially underemployed young men. 

While the model has made less educated visitors vulnerable to manipulation (as by “fake news” and intentional gaming of the systems by foreign interests, which Facebook especially has stopped with various purges for bad-faith coordinated behaviors) the models also have allowed independent media to call out legacy media for flawed and biased reporting, as in the Covington kids incident. Legacy media has also had a problem with clickbait, even though it has greatly increased subscription and paywalls in recent years.
  
NPR has a similar story by Jennifer Liberto and Avie Schneider. 

Sunday, September 08, 2019

Why younger men can't find marriage partners (unless they're gay)



Tim Pool discusses some of my favorites topics:  population demographics, low birth rates with affluent people, and upward affiliation among straight people.


This video sounds like a reissue of George Gilder’s 1986 book “Men and Marriage”.  These problems were already evident by the 1980s.

These topics might be viewed as inherently racist or supremacist by some of woke tech’s new standards.
  
It’s true that the new world has created a paradox that interferes with marriages forming.  The obvious question then is could gay marriage take up the slack?  Maybe if you stay away from Chick-fil-a and protesters in Toronto. 

Saturday, September 07, 2019

Bostwiki compares the New York Times and Washington Post (like the Mets v. Nationals)


Bostwiki offers a comparison of the New York Times and the Washington Post.


The New York Times has more subscribers (including in print), the Washington Post has more content, especially fed to social media, and more opinion pieces from outside contributors.

He also notes that while the New York Times is a publicly traded company, you can’t by class B shares, so in many ways it is more like a private company (like the Post under Bezos).

Both have been guilty of overplaying wokeness lately. The NYTimes overdid it on a piece on radicalization, and the Post got sued (although the suit was dismissed) by the Sandmann family for careless reporting on incomplete information on the Covington Kids mess.

Bostwiki says that the Post and NYTimes are still our best news institutions.  (Maybe LA?) 

So Extinction Rebellion will target them both.
  
Well, you could compare Subverse, News2Share, and my little DADT operation – they’re all different and started very differently and wind up covering similar things.

Friday, September 06, 2019

Trump supporters reported to be raising a slush fund to smear journalists, but the woke Left does the same thing


David Pakman reports that a cabal within Trump’s camp is raising money to target journalists.
  
  
While the main targets might be higher profile speakers in large newspapers and liberal networks like CNN and MSNBC, Pakman fear that independent journalists like him might be included.
  
He says they will go after journalists who go after Trump on issues like his fitness to be in office.
   
Seriously a few of his gaffes in recent weeks (saying “a lot of stupid things” as Economic Invincibility once said) – like the most recent one about Poland – seem to suggest intellectual problems and dementia. Trump was quite clear and lucid with this reasoning, and consistent, with how he ran and spoke in the “board room” on the Apprentice and was generous enough to send one contestant (Troy McClain, who indeed went through an ordeal) to college and pay his tuition.  (Troy also worked for  him in Atlantic City in the mid 2000’s).
  
Timcast (Tim Pool) is reporting this morning about how far Left cancel culture has created an underground Army of Trump supporters, and also notes the new wave of anti-trust probes against Google and Facebook.  I’ll come back to those. “Black Pidgeon” notes that the Woke Left has turned against ContraPoints, one of their own.

Wednesday, September 04, 2019

YouTube, despite recent reassurance of an open platform, seems to double down more on independent political and social commentary


Although Susan Wojcicki, YouTube CEO, says she wants an open platform (which doesn’t mean the right to monetization), there have appeared disturbing signs in the past few days that it is getting tougher on some political content.
  
The official YouTube blog starts a series “The 4 R’s ofResponsibility”; it also issued statistics showing the reasons for Community Guidelines.  

This seems to be the first of a series, and refers enhanced machine detection of content before it is uploaded or seen by many viewers.
  
The Hill and some other sources report YouTube’s removal of over 100000 videos under new hate speech rules, but that is small compared to over 9 million videos (4 million channels) that are spam.
  
The controversial hate speech rules are still those listed on June 5, 2019 (video in May).  The most important seem to have to do with supporting “white supremacy” or “white nationalism” but YouTube will say that this policy is abstract:  no ideology that allows one group to capture or exclude or subjugate another is allowed – it so happens that given American (and European) history this is likely to affect “the right” more.   It might seem to allow Communism (but not Fascism) because Communism is supposed to apply across an entire country regardless of other groups.  But it would allow intersectionality because that ideology is premised on a group’s claim of prior oppression.  Yet, the rules could compromise the integrity of independent political commentary because of the circumstantial bias with respect to certain groups.
   
There are other problems:  it would make any science studies of accidental racial genetic differences (like sickle cell anemia, or anomalies related to sunlight exposure) possibly risky, or talk of relative birth rates (related to future demographics) risky, even though these are very relevant for problems like the future of Social Security in the U.S.  It could make discussions of reparations (especially involving native lands, or overseas as in South Africa) racy.    It could channel discussion of LGBTQ issues into intersectional channels rather than looking at them in the individually nuanced way necessary for discussion issues like gays in the military (settled 2011) and now transgender in the military.  
  
   
Tim Pool notes in his Timcast today that he feels YouTube is retroactively removing content that did not violate any rules and even allowing bad comments to cause a video to removed (or is this just the channel?)  Pool (as does Pakman) feels that YouTube wants to discourage independent political commentary channels and direct creators to work for established media companies or (like Facebook) raise money for established non-profits. This question came up at the Minds conference in Philadelphia Aug. 31.  

Tuesday, September 03, 2019

Baseball: when the home team has the advantage (not just in kids' backyard games)


Let’s turn to baseball.  The greatest sin is to blow a game in the bottom of the ninth on the road. Leading 5-4, the Mets scored 5 in the top of the 9th to lead 10-4.  With only one out, the Nats came back with 7, ending the game with a 3-run homer from Suzuki, a no-doubter, for the biggest walkoff since the team moved from Montreal in 2005. 


Back in 1961, the “new” Senators had spotted the White Sox 3 in the top of the 9th, and came back with 4, including a homer by Willie Tasby with two outs in the ninth on a two-strike pitch (box).

Then, later that June, right after my high school graduation, I watched them (at a party in Maryland) score 5 in the top of the 9th, to lead 12-5, only to give up 8 runs with two outs and a man on first and lose 13-12 (box)  and go on to be swept in a four game series.  They would finish the season 61-100.
  
Another aside: Starbucks has stopped carrying print newspapers, because people take them, and they don’t want to enforce a no-shoplifting policy on newspapers.  Even worse for the legacy newspaper.

Monday, September 02, 2019

US military will take on "fake news": Oh, really?


Now the US military is going to launch covert operations to identify and suppress fake news?  That’s what Pete Norman reports on Bloomberg, and Tim Pool picks up on it.


Bloomberg’s analysis (paywall) leads to a “quick take” story by Sarah Frier of Russian fake-news meddling.  It leads to the perspective that Russia was more interested in creating social divisions between “elites” and “proles” than actual US policy.  It was trying to encourage populism and anti-intellectualism, to weaken the US as an adversary. And an intellectually incompetent candidate hooked on old ideas of power and loyalty won.
  
It doesn’t appear that the US military can do much about US user generated content.  But I do worry that a US president might be able to use national emergency powers to shut most of it down (with a crippling economic blow) if internal gun-supported insurgency and radicalization reached a critical mass (Book reviews, Jan. 6).
  
I just subscribed to Bloomberg, introductory start rate that expands – and I see it has multi-user subscriptions.  That’s an interesting concept, but I’m not social enough to use them.  We need to develop bundled paywalls, even for video channels.
  
NPC has a satirical piece about Tim Pool, and you have to read into it to realize it is a joke. I use a gray Yankee’s cap or a red (MAGA-looking) Nationals cap as a “beanie”.

A Facebook friend has a provocative Intro: "Always take sides: Neutrality helps the oppressor, never the victim", from Elie Wiesel ("Night", 1960, often taught in high school).  In fact, I would take a moment to read Google's chosen quotes from him.  We'll return to that later.