Archive for the 'Around the World' Category

“He gave me a new vacuum cleaner to soften the blow.”

Monday, September 18th, 2017

The Moth Presents: Dr. Mary-Claire King at the World Science Festival. (YouTube, 12:32min)

If you prefer to read a transcript, you can find it here. Link via MetaFilter.


Sunday, September 17th, 2017

Die Zeit: Wenn es die Sklaverei noch gäbe. “HBO plant eine TV-Serie, in der die Südstaaten der USA den Bürgerkrieg nicht verloren haben. Darf man in Zeiten alternativer Fakten mit alternativer Geschichte spielen?” Von Patrik Schmidt.

“Im Amerika des Jahres 2017 scheint sich an den Alternativweltserien aber ein fundamentaler Dissens zu offenbaren, der die Züge einer großen Verunsicherung trägt: Es ist, als wisse das Land nicht mehr so recht, was seine Geschichte eigentlich gewesen ist. Die unzuverlässigen Erzählungen aus der virtuellen Geschichte füllen diese Lücke. Deshalb schwingt in der Debatte auch immer die Frage mit, welche Funktion den Alternativhistorien eigentlich für unsere Gegenwart zukommt: Erklären Alternativweltgeschichten bloß die Vergangenheit, indem sie das ganze Spektrum ihrer Entwicklungspotenziale durchspielen? Oder warnen sie uns vor den unsichtbaren Gefahren, die auch in der Jetztzeit stets nur eine falsche Abzweigung entfernt sind?

Wahrscheinlich gilt für die alternativen Weltentwürfe, was für die Prophezeiungen der Science-Fiction so oft gilt: Sie sind weniger eine Weltbeschreibung als eine zutreffende Kartographierung unserer gegenwärtigen Ängste.”

[H]eroin and synthetic opiates kill one American every 16 minutes

Wednesday, September 13th, 2017

Cincinnati Enquirer: Seven Days of Heroin – this is what an epidemic looks like. “The Enquirer sent more than 60 reporters, photographers and videographers into their communities to chronicle an ordinary week in this extraordinary time.”

Link via MetaFilter.

“Arpaio’s jails weren’t just tough and humiliating, they were sometimes deadly.”

Tuesday, September 12th, 2017

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver (HBO): Joe Arpaio:. “Donald Trump issued his first presidential pardon to the last person who should get one. John Oliver discusses the troubling record of former Arizona sheriff Joe Arpaio.”

“Here’s the thing there: He was absolutely not just doing his job. He was also doing something illegal. […] And yet I do not doubt that Trump thinks that everything Joe Arpaio did was or should be part of a law enforcement officer’s job. And that is the real problem here. That is why this pardon is a slap in the face to Latinos that Arpaio and his department unconstitutionally targeted, and that is why it’s a slap in the face to the very rule of law itself, because Arpaio broke the rules he was sworn to uphold, rules that are put in place to protect citizens from a government going out of control. And Trump giving him a pass after everything that you have seen tonight and saying he was just doing his job is a loud confirmation that, at least as far as this White House is concerned, for the next few years law enforcement won’t necessarily be expected to do their jobs the way the constitution or the courts say they should. Instead, like Sherriff Joe Arpaio , they should absolutely feel free to do their job [however they like].”

“It is as if the white tribe united in demonstration to say, “If a black man can be president, then any white man—no matter how fallen—can be president.””

Monday, September 11th, 2017

The Atlantic: The First White President. “The foundation of Donald Trump’s presidency is the negation of Barack Obama’s legacy.” By Ta-Nehisi Coates.

“When a woman “exploded” and told [George] Packer, “I want to eat what I want to eat, and for them to tell me I can’t eat French fries or Coca-Cola—no way,” he sees this as a rebellion against “the moral superiority of elites.” In fact, this elite conspiracy dates back to 1894, when the government first began advising Americans on their diets. As recently as 2002, President George W. Bush launched the HealthierUS initiative, urging Americans to exercise and eat healthy food. But Packer never allows himself to wonder whether the explosion he witnessed had anything to do with the fact that similar advice now came from the country’s first black first lady. Packer concludes that Obama was leaving the country “more divided and angrier than most Americans can remember,” a statement that is likely true only because most Americans identify as white. Certainly the men and women forced to live in the wake of the beating of John Lewis, the lynching of Emmett Till, the firebombing of Percy Julian’s home, and the assassinations of Martin Luther King Jr. and Medgar Evers would disagree.”

Link via MetaFilter.