{ "version": "https://jsonfeed.org/version/1", "title": "The Insightful Troll", "home_page_url": "http://insightfultroll.com", "feed_url": "http://insightfultroll.com/feed.json", "description": "", "icon": "http://insightfultroll.com", "favicon": "http://insightfultroll.com/favicon.ico", "expired": false, "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "items": [ { "id": "/blog/2021/09/18/being-a-good-photographer/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/09/18/being-a-good-photographer/", "title": "Being a good Photographer", "date_published": "2021-09-18T00:15:15-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-09-18T00:15:15-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Be consistent, dedicated and don’t give a f*ck what others think!

\n\n
\n\n\n


\n\n

Lets stop worrying about who or who won’t see our photography. Or how we can get it to a wider audience and instead remember why we are taking photographs in the first place.

\n\n

[…]

\n\n

Never let this idea of having to show your photographs again to be considered a real photographer ever take hold in your mind.

\n", "content_html": "

Be consistent, dedicated and don’t give a f*ck what others think!

\n\n
\n\n\n


\n\n

Lets stop worrying about who or who won’t see our photography. Or how we can get it to a wider audience and instead remember why we are taking photographs in the first place.

\n\n

[…]

\n\n

Never let this idea of having to show your photographs again to be considered a real photographer ever take hold in your mind.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/09/14/holmes-defense-he-made-me-do-it/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/09/14/holmes-defense-he-made-me-do-it/", "title": "Elizabeth Holmes defense - he made me do it", "date_published": "2021-09-14T04:10:24-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-09-14T04:10:24-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Facing the possibility of up to 20 years in federal prison, Holmes has been charged with 12 felony counts including wire fraud, conspiracy to commit wire fraud, and defrauding patients and investors. She has already previewed her defense in court filings: She alleges that Theranos — the blood testing startup that she started at the age of 19 after dropping out of Stanford University — was a complicated business but was not a fraud, and that she was emotionally, physically, and sexually abused by her former business partner and boyfriend, Ramesh “Sunny” Balwani.

\n\n

Danny Cevallos on a piece over at NBC News:

\n\n

Recently unsealed federal court documents in Elizabeth Holmes’ wire fraud trial revealed a creative legal strategy her defense team may use to try to beat the charges to be weighed by a Northern California jury, whose selection began Tuesday. The documents argue that Ramesh “Sunny” Balwani, at one time her boyfriend and the former president and chief operating officer of Theranos, deceived Holmes about the company’s financial models and subjected her to intimate partner abuse.

\n\n

[…]

\n\n

Blaming your co-defendant isn’t, itself, a novel defense theory. It has been around for as long as there have been co-defendants. It’s especially popular in drug possession cases. Four guys in a car plus one baggie of drugs often equals a whole lot of: “That ain’t mine — it’s his.” The strategy of one defendant blaming his or her partner in a romantic relationship isn’t new, either. But Holmes faces particular hurdles.

\n\n

For starters, it was Holmes whom the world saw Forbes name as the youngest-ever self-made female billionaire in 2014. Holmes — not Balwani — took to the airwaves to fire back at The Wall Street Journal when it began publishing stories raising doubt about her business, exposing Theranos’ flawed technology and how the company covered up its own failures. Soon after, the Justice Department charged her and Balwani with defrauding investors, as well as patients of Theranos.

\n\n

Is it possible that Holmes was in the thrall of her older, more forceful, romantic partner the entire time? Maybe. But the jury might not buy it. And even if jurors think she was swayed by Balwani, is it enough for them to absolve her of responsibility if she knew what was really going on?

\n\n

Basically it’s a ‘He made me do it’ defense. I’m no lawyer, but this doesn’t sound like a very good defense.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Facing the possibility of up to 20 years in federal prison, Holmes has been charged with 12 felony counts including wire fraud, conspiracy to commit wire fraud, and defrauding patients and investors. She has already previewed her defense in court filings: She alleges that Theranos — the blood testing startup that she started at the age of 19 after dropping out of Stanford University — was a complicated business but was not a fraud, and that she was emotionally, physically, and sexually abused by her former business partner and boyfriend, Ramesh “Sunny” Balwani.

\n\n

Danny Cevallos on a piece over at NBC News:

\n\n

Recently unsealed federal court documents in Elizabeth Holmes’ wire fraud trial revealed a creative legal strategy her defense team may use to try to beat the charges to be weighed by a Northern California jury, whose selection began Tuesday. The documents argue that Ramesh “Sunny” Balwani, at one time her boyfriend and the former president and chief operating officer of Theranos, deceived Holmes about the company’s financial models and subjected her to intimate partner abuse.

\n\n

[…]

\n\n

Blaming your co-defendant isn’t, itself, a novel defense theory. It has been around for as long as there have been co-defendants. It’s especially popular in drug possession cases. Four guys in a car plus one baggie of drugs often equals a whole lot of: “That ain’t mine — it’s his.” The strategy of one defendant blaming his or her partner in a romantic relationship isn’t new, either. But Holmes faces particular hurdles.

\n\n

For starters, it was Holmes whom the world saw Forbes name as the youngest-ever self-made female billionaire in 2014. Holmes — not Balwani — took to the airwaves to fire back at The Wall Street Journal when it began publishing stories raising doubt about her business, exposing Theranos’ flawed technology and how the company covered up its own failures. Soon after, the Justice Department charged her and Balwani with defrauding investors, as well as patients of Theranos.

\n\n

Is it possible that Holmes was in the thrall of her older, more forceful, romantic partner the entire time? Maybe. But the jury might not buy it. And even if jurors think she was swayed by Balwani, is it enough for them to absolve her of responsibility if she knew what was really going on?

\n\n

Basically it’s a ‘He made me do it’ defense. I’m no lawyer, but this doesn’t sound like a very good defense.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/09/12/fear-and-loathing-in-america/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/09/12/fear-and-loathing-in-america/", "title": "Fear & Loathing in America", "date_published": "2021-09-12T22:46:06-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-09-12T22:46:06-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Hunter S. Thompson was prescient:

\n\n

The towers are gone now, reduced to bloody rubble, along with all hopes for Peace in Our Time, in the United States or any other country. Make no mistake about it: We are At War now — with somebody — and we will stay At War with that mysterious Enemy for the rest of our lives.

\n\n

It will be a Religious War, a sort of Christian Jihad, fueled by religious hatred and led by merciless fanatics on both sides. It will be guerrilla warfare on a global scale, with no front lines and no identifiable enemy. Osama bin Laden may be a primitive “figurehead” — or even dead, for all we know — but whoever put those All-American jet planes loaded with All-American fuel into the Twin Towers and the Pentagon did it with chilling precision and accuracy. The second one was a dead-on bullseye. Straight into the middle of the skyscraper.

\n\n

Nothing — even George Bush’s $350 billion “Star Wars” missile defense system — could have prevented Tuesday’s attack, and it cost next to nothing to pull off. Fewer than 20 unarmed Suicide soldiers from some apparently primitive country somewhere on the other side of the world took out the World Trade Center and half the Pentagon with three quick and costless strikes on one day. The efficiency of it was terrifying.

\n\n

We are going to punish somebody for this attack, but just who or what will be blown to smithereens for it is hard to say. Maybe Afghanistan, maybe Pakistan or Iraq, or possibly all three at once. Who knows? Not even the Generals in what remains of the Pentagon or the New York papers calling for WAR seem to know who did it or where to look for them.

\n", "content_html": "

Hunter S. Thompson was prescient:

\n\n

The towers are gone now, reduced to bloody rubble, along with all hopes for Peace in Our Time, in the United States or any other country. Make no mistake about it: We are At War now — with somebody — and we will stay At War with that mysterious Enemy for the rest of our lives.

\n\n

It will be a Religious War, a sort of Christian Jihad, fueled by religious hatred and led by merciless fanatics on both sides. It will be guerrilla warfare on a global scale, with no front lines and no identifiable enemy. Osama bin Laden may be a primitive “figurehead” — or even dead, for all we know — but whoever put those All-American jet planes loaded with All-American fuel into the Twin Towers and the Pentagon did it with chilling precision and accuracy. The second one was a dead-on bullseye. Straight into the middle of the skyscraper.

\n\n

Nothing — even George Bush’s $350 billion “Star Wars” missile defense system — could have prevented Tuesday’s attack, and it cost next to nothing to pull off. Fewer than 20 unarmed Suicide soldiers from some apparently primitive country somewhere on the other side of the world took out the World Trade Center and half the Pentagon with three quick and costless strikes on one day. The efficiency of it was terrifying.

\n\n

We are going to punish somebody for this attack, but just who or what will be blown to smithereens for it is hard to say. Maybe Afghanistan, maybe Pakistan or Iraq, or possibly all three at once. Who knows? Not even the Generals in what remains of the Pentagon or the New York papers calling for WAR seem to know who did it or where to look for them.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/09/11/the-matrix-resurrections/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/09/11/the-matrix-resurrections/", "title": "The Matrix Resurrections", "date_published": "2021-09-11T01:19:10-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-09-11T01:19:10-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n



\nWhoa.

\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n



\nWhoa.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/09/11/microsoft-mandates-vaccinations/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/09/11/microsoft-mandates-vaccinations/", "title": "Microsoft mandates vaccinations", "date_published": "2021-09-11T01:09:23-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-09-11T01:09:23-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Paul Roberts in Seattle Times:

\n\n

In a sign of growing momentum for vaccine mandates, Microsoft has reversed course and will now require employees to be fully vaccinated to enter the company’s U.S. offices and other worksites, starting next month.

\n\n

The Redmond-based tech giant told employees Tuesday it will “require proof of vaccination for all employees, vendors, and any guests entering Microsoft buildings in the U.S.”

\n\n

The company also said it will have a process to accommodate employees “who have a medical condition or other protected reason, such as religion, which prevent them from getting vaccinated.”

\n\n

Why the exclusion for religion? Its very simple, if you choose to work here, you must be vaccinated. We don’t allow children to skip vaccinations for say Polio to attend school. Regardless of religion. Unless a valid medical reason from a physician is obtained, vaccination for Covid-19 should be a requirement for work.

\n", "content_html": "

Paul Roberts in Seattle Times:

\n\n

In a sign of growing momentum for vaccine mandates, Microsoft has reversed course and will now require employees to be fully vaccinated to enter the company’s U.S. offices and other worksites, starting next month.

\n\n

The Redmond-based tech giant told employees Tuesday it will “require proof of vaccination for all employees, vendors, and any guests entering Microsoft buildings in the U.S.”

\n\n

The company also said it will have a process to accommodate employees “who have a medical condition or other protected reason, such as religion, which prevent them from getting vaccinated.”

\n\n

Why the exclusion for religion? Its very simple, if you choose to work here, you must be vaccinated. We don’t allow children to skip vaccinations for say Polio to attend school. Regardless of religion. Unless a valid medical reason from a physician is obtained, vaccination for Covid-19 should be a requirement for work.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/09/11/algorithmic-based-triage/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/09/11/algorithmic-based-triage/", "title": "algorithmic based triage", "date_published": "2021-09-11T00:56:46-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-09-11T00:56:46-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Vishal Khetpal & Nishant Shah in an opinion piece for Undark:

\n\n

In the midst of the uncertainty, Epic, a private electronic health record giant and a key purveyor of American health data, accelerated the deployment of a clinical prediction tool called the Deterioration Index. Built with a type of artificial intelligence called machine learning and in use at some hospitals prior to the pandemic, the index is designed to help physicians decide when to move a patient into or out of intensive care, and is influenced by factors like breathing rate and blood potassium level. Epic had been tinkering with the index for years but expanded its use during the pandemic. At hundreds of hospitals, including those in which we both work, a Deterioration Index score is prominently displayed on the chart of every patient admitted to the hospital

\n\n

[..]

\n\n

The use of algorithms to support clinical decision making isn’t new. But historically, these tools have been put into use only after a rigorous peer review of the raw data and statistical analyses used to develop them. Epic’s Deterioration Index, on the other hand, remains proprietary despite its widespread deployment. Although physicians are provided with a list of the variables used to calculate the index and a rough estimate of each variable’s impact on the score, we aren’t allowed under the hood to evaluate the raw data and calculations.

\n\n

Blind trust in an algorithm that is create and maintained by a for profit institution without transparency of the data or calculations performed is insane. How do we know what assumptions are made? What the actual characteristics of the calculations are? How are they validated?

\n\n

We don’t just trust the word of researchers findings without peer review - why should we treat an algorithm any different?

\n", "content_html": "

Vishal Khetpal & Nishant Shah in an opinion piece for Undark:

\n\n

In the midst of the uncertainty, Epic, a private electronic health record giant and a key purveyor of American health data, accelerated the deployment of a clinical prediction tool called the Deterioration Index. Built with a type of artificial intelligence called machine learning and in use at some hospitals prior to the pandemic, the index is designed to help physicians decide when to move a patient into or out of intensive care, and is influenced by factors like breathing rate and blood potassium level. Epic had been tinkering with the index for years but expanded its use during the pandemic. At hundreds of hospitals, including those in which we both work, a Deterioration Index score is prominently displayed on the chart of every patient admitted to the hospital

\n\n

[..]

\n\n

The use of algorithms to support clinical decision making isn’t new. But historically, these tools have been put into use only after a rigorous peer review of the raw data and statistical analyses used to develop them. Epic’s Deterioration Index, on the other hand, remains proprietary despite its widespread deployment. Although physicians are provided with a list of the variables used to calculate the index and a rough estimate of each variable’s impact on the score, we aren’t allowed under the hood to evaluate the raw data and calculations.

\n\n

Blind trust in an algorithm that is create and maintained by a for profit institution without transparency of the data or calculations performed is insane. How do we know what assumptions are made? What the actual characteristics of the calculations are? How are they validated?

\n\n

We don’t just trust the word of researchers findings without peer review - why should we treat an algorithm any different?

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/09/08/what-makes-a-good-life/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/09/08/what-makes-a-good-life/", "title": "What makes a good life?", "date_published": "2021-09-08T04:08:49-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-09-08T04:08:49-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\n\n

…many of our men when they were starting out as young adults really believed that fame and wealth and high achievement are what they needed to go after to have a good life. But over and over, over these 75 years, our study has shown that the people who fared the best were the people who leaned into relationships - with family, friends and community.

\n\n

[..]

\n\n

The good life is built with good relationships

\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\n\n

…many of our men when they were starting out as young adults really believed that fame and wealth and high achievement are what they needed to go after to have a good life. But over and over, over these 75 years, our study has shown that the people who fared the best were the people who leaned into relationships - with family, friends and community.

\n\n

[..]

\n\n

The good life is built with good relationships

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/09/05/the-cost-of-the-afghansitan-war/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/09/05/the-cost-of-the-afghansitan-war/", "title": "The Cost of the Afghansitan war", "date_published": "2021-09-05T14:56:21-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-09-05T14:56:21-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed. This world in arms is not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children. The cost of one modern heavy bomber is this: a modern brick school in more than 30 cities. It is two electric power plants, each serving a town of 60,000 population. It is two fine, fully equipped hospitals. It is some 50 miles of concrete highway. We pay for a single fighter plane with a half million bushels of wheat. We pay for a single destroyer with new homes that could have housed more than 8,000 people. This, I repeat, is the best way of life to be found on the road. the world has been taking. This is not a way of life at all, in any true sense. Under the cloud of threatening war, it is humanity hanging from a cross of iron.

\n\n

Dwight David Eisenhower, “The Chance for Peace”

\n\n

We spent 2.3 trillion dollars - to put it into a bit more manageable number - $300 million dollars a day for 20 years. And what did we get for that investment (I am not even going to get into the lives of US soldiers and the Afghan population that were sacrificed)? Nothing. The middle east is still a hotbed of terrorism, countries are still committing human rights violations on a daily basis, and the Taliban is still in charge.

\n\n

What could we have done with $300 million dollars a day here at home? Here is a breakdown of cost for each of these possible government programs and the equivalent cost in days of the war in Afghanistan:

\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n
Program Days Cost (in Billions)
End hunger 84 $25
End homelessness 66 $20
Universal preschool 667 $200
Fix roads, bridges and dams in the US 1,960 $588
Provide clean drinking water 500 $150
Eliminate tuition at public colleges 3967 $1,190
Totals 7,244 $2,173
\n\n\n

If the United States paid for all of these federal programs, we would still have $230 billion left over. Let that sink in for a moment - we could have solved all of our major social problems at home and it would still be cheaper than the 20 year war in Afghanistan. $230 billion dollars cheaper. Was it really worth it? How can anyone possibly justify this?

\n\n

Why is it that when a plan is proposed to secure the social safety net or to help the US middle class we always ask how are we going to pay for it? Yet we as a nation spend trillions on never ending ideological based wars without blinking an eye. If we can fund a war for 2.3 trillion dollars for two decades, we as a country can find a way to house the homeless, feed the poor and educate our children.

\n\n

I don’t ever want to hear a politician ever ask how we are going to pay for it.

\n", "content_html": "

Every gun that is made, every warship launched, every rocket fired signifies, in the final sense, a theft from those who hunger and are not fed, those who are cold and are not clothed. This world in arms is not spending money alone. It is spending the sweat of its laborers, the genius of its scientists, the hopes of its children. The cost of one modern heavy bomber is this: a modern brick school in more than 30 cities. It is two electric power plants, each serving a town of 60,000 population. It is two fine, fully equipped hospitals. It is some 50 miles of concrete highway. We pay for a single fighter plane with a half million bushels of wheat. We pay for a single destroyer with new homes that could have housed more than 8,000 people. This, I repeat, is the best way of life to be found on the road. the world has been taking. This is not a way of life at all, in any true sense. Under the cloud of threatening war, it is humanity hanging from a cross of iron.

\n\n

Dwight David Eisenhower, “The Chance for Peace”

\n\n

We spent 2.3 trillion dollars - to put it into a bit more manageable number - $300 million dollars a day for 20 years. And what did we get for that investment (I am not even going to get into the lives of US soldiers and the Afghan population that were sacrificed)? Nothing. The middle east is still a hotbed of terrorism, countries are still committing human rights violations on a daily basis, and the Taliban is still in charge.

\n\n

What could we have done with $300 million dollars a day here at home? Here is a breakdown of cost for each of these possible government programs and the equivalent cost in days of the war in Afghanistan:

\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n
Program Days Cost (in Billions)
End hunger 84 $25
End homelessness 66 $20
Universal preschool 667 $200
Fix roads, bridges and dams in the US 1,960 $588
Provide clean drinking water 500 $150
Eliminate tuition at public colleges 3967 $1,190
Totals 7,244 $2,173
\n\n\n

If the United States paid for all of these federal programs, we would still have $230 billion left over. Let that sink in for a moment - we could have solved all of our major social problems at home and it would still be cheaper than the 20 year war in Afghanistan. $230 billion dollars cheaper. Was it really worth it? How can anyone possibly justify this?

\n\n

Why is it that when a plan is proposed to secure the social safety net or to help the US middle class we always ask how are we going to pay for it? Yet we as a nation spend trillions on never ending ideological based wars without blinking an eye. If we can fund a war for 2.3 trillion dollars for two decades, we as a country can find a way to house the homeless, feed the poor and educate our children.

\n\n

I don’t ever want to hear a politician ever ask how we are going to pay for it.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/09/04/why-cant-we-just-make-more-chips/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/09/04/why-cant-we-just-make-more-chips/", "title": "Why can’t we just make more chips?", "date_published": "2021-09-04T16:47:31-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-09-04T16:47:31-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

The global chip shortage is battering everyone - automakers, tech giants and reaching out to everyday individuals. Goods we rely on are getting scarce and prices are going up.

\n\n

So why can’t we just make make more? The usual and simple answers - build more foundries, hire more people, give tax incentives to chip makers and loosen regulations - just won’t work. Chip manufacturing is a complex and high risk proposition. Bloomberg has an excellent article on why the semiconductor industry is so hard to break into and expand:

\n\n

The more complicated answer is that it takes years to build semiconductor fabrication facilities and billions of dollars—and even then the economics are so brutal that you can lose out if your manufacturing expertise is a fraction behind the competition. Former Intel Corp. boss Craig Barrett called his company’s microprocessors the most complicated devices ever made by man.

\n\n

This is why countries face such difficulty in achieving semiconductor self sufficiency. China has called chip independence a top national priority in its latest five-year plan, while U.S. President Joe Biden has vowed to build a secure American supply chain by reviving domestic manufacturing. Even the European Union is mulling measures to make its own chips. But success is anything but assured.

\n\n

Manufacturing a chip typically takes more than three months and involves giant factories, dust-free rooms, multi-million-dollar machines, molten tin and lasers. The end goal is to transform wafers of silicon—an element extracted from plain sand—into a network of billions of tiny switches called transistors that form the basis of the circuitry that will eventually give a phone, computer, car, washing machine or satellite crucial capabilities.

\n\n

[..]

\n\n

Yield—the percentage of chips that aren’t discarded—is the key measure. Anything less than 90% is a problem. But chipmakers only exceed that level by learning expensive lessons over and over again, and building on that knowledge.

\n\n

The brutal economics of the industry mean fewer companies can afford to keep up. Most of the roughly 1.4 billion smartphone processors shipped each year are made by TSMC. Intel has 80% of the market for computer processors. Samsung dominates in memory chips. For everyone else, including China, it’s not easy to break in.

\n\n

The amount of resources required and the time frame for profits to emerge is just to vast of a risk for the private sector to bear. The only way a country can guarantee chip independence with direct partnership chip manufacturers. Each country is going to have to treat its chip supply chain just as important to invest in as its defense industry.

\n", "content_html": "

The global chip shortage is battering everyone - automakers, tech giants and reaching out to everyday individuals. Goods we rely on are getting scarce and prices are going up.

\n\n

So why can’t we just make make more? The usual and simple answers - build more foundries, hire more people, give tax incentives to chip makers and loosen regulations - just won’t work. Chip manufacturing is a complex and high risk proposition. Bloomberg has an excellent article on why the semiconductor industry is so hard to break into and expand:

\n\n

The more complicated answer is that it takes years to build semiconductor fabrication facilities and billions of dollars—and even then the economics are so brutal that you can lose out if your manufacturing expertise is a fraction behind the competition. Former Intel Corp. boss Craig Barrett called his company’s microprocessors the most complicated devices ever made by man.

\n\n

This is why countries face such difficulty in achieving semiconductor self sufficiency. China has called chip independence a top national priority in its latest five-year plan, while U.S. President Joe Biden has vowed to build a secure American supply chain by reviving domestic manufacturing. Even the European Union is mulling measures to make its own chips. But success is anything but assured.

\n\n

Manufacturing a chip typically takes more than three months and involves giant factories, dust-free rooms, multi-million-dollar machines, molten tin and lasers. The end goal is to transform wafers of silicon—an element extracted from plain sand—into a network of billions of tiny switches called transistors that form the basis of the circuitry that will eventually give a phone, computer, car, washing machine or satellite crucial capabilities.

\n\n

[..]

\n\n

Yield—the percentage of chips that aren’t discarded—is the key measure. Anything less than 90% is a problem. But chipmakers only exceed that level by learning expensive lessons over and over again, and building on that knowledge.

\n\n

The brutal economics of the industry mean fewer companies can afford to keep up. Most of the roughly 1.4 billion smartphone processors shipped each year are made by TSMC. Intel has 80% of the market for computer processors. Samsung dominates in memory chips. For everyone else, including China, it’s not easy to break in.

\n\n

The amount of resources required and the time frame for profits to emerge is just to vast of a risk for the private sector to bear. The only way a country can guarantee chip independence with direct partnership chip manufacturers. Each country is going to have to treat its chip supply chain just as important to invest in as its defense industry.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/09/03/we-make-monsters/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/09/03/we-make-monsters/", "title": "we make monsters", "date_published": "2021-09-03T02:04:39-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-09-03T02:04:39-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Jessica Wildfire has a great post on the recent trend of supposedly educated people railing against science and common sense:

\n\n

They came from college, the kind run by boards of trustees stacked with millionaires and billionaires.\nWe serve the children of privilege.

\n\n

My own university used to focus on educating less-privileged students. Then they got it in their heads that poor people didn’t belong in college, and they didn’t really deserve an education. Since then, they’ve systematically defunded every program that was designed for them. They’ve piped that money straight into the business school and athletics, because that’s what all the rich white kids are interested in. Before the pandemic, they were throwing giant parties in the middle of campus.

\n\n

The world has bent over backward to give privileged idiots college degrees, and put them in positions of money and power. That’s why we have a bunch of “educated people” who don’t believe in basic science. We’ve forced people to work for them. We’ve forced people to care for them when they get sick. We’ve sold the fiction that somehow their aggressive behavior is our fault, because we weren’t nice to them.

\n\n

No, this is what happens when you let someone win at Monopoly. They don’t play fair on their own. They get entitled.

\n\n

They get loud and obnoxious.

\n\n

What we’re seeing across the country isn’t the result of misunderstanding or miscommunication. It’s the product of an education system that rewards affluent people without challenging them.

\n\n

[..]

\n\n

So you want to understand where all these anti-vaxxers and neo-Nazis are coming from, and why they don’t fit the stereotype of the backwoods redneck. You want to know why they dress well and don’t speak with deep accents. You want to know where they come from.

\n\n

Well, I know

\n\n

They come from the monster factory.

\n\n

I work there.

\n", "content_html": "

Jessica Wildfire has a great post on the recent trend of supposedly educated people railing against science and common sense:

\n\n

They came from college, the kind run by boards of trustees stacked with millionaires and billionaires.\nWe serve the children of privilege.

\n\n

My own university used to focus on educating less-privileged students. Then they got it in their heads that poor people didn’t belong in college, and they didn’t really deserve an education. Since then, they’ve systematically defunded every program that was designed for them. They’ve piped that money straight into the business school and athletics, because that’s what all the rich white kids are interested in. Before the pandemic, they were throwing giant parties in the middle of campus.

\n\n

The world has bent over backward to give privileged idiots college degrees, and put them in positions of money and power. That’s why we have a bunch of “educated people” who don’t believe in basic science. We’ve forced people to work for them. We’ve forced people to care for them when they get sick. We’ve sold the fiction that somehow their aggressive behavior is our fault, because we weren’t nice to them.

\n\n

No, this is what happens when you let someone win at Monopoly. They don’t play fair on their own. They get entitled.

\n\n

They get loud and obnoxious.

\n\n

What we’re seeing across the country isn’t the result of misunderstanding or miscommunication. It’s the product of an education system that rewards affluent people without challenging them.

\n\n

[..]

\n\n

So you want to understand where all these anti-vaxxers and neo-Nazis are coming from, and why they don’t fit the stereotype of the backwoods redneck. You want to know why they dress well and don’t speak with deep accents. You want to know where they come from.

\n\n

Well, I know

\n\n

They come from the monster factory.

\n\n

I work there.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/08/29/why-do-we-have-lawns/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/08/29/why-do-we-have-lawns/", "title": "Why do we have lawns?", "date_published": "2021-08-29T01:13:43-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-08-29T01:13:43-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Kathryn O’Shea-Evans writing for The Atlantic

\n\n

The Falvos are among the many homeowners who’ve decided to investigate green alternatives, deeming a perfect carpet of classic grass too taxing on such resources as time, water and money. Others don’t want to use chemical fertilizers and weedkillers and prefer to provide a habitat for more diverse fauna than a monoculture lawn supports.

\n\n

Why do we even have lawns? With water resources being stretched thin and climate change causing wide spread droughts throughout the country - having a lush green lawn today is simply not sustainable. I mean really - why not just have a dry garden?

\n\n

\"Dry

\n\n

Low maintenance, minimal water usage and great at fighting climate change. Not to mention it is much cheaper. In my opinion it looks nice too.

\n", "content_html": "

Kathryn O’Shea-Evans writing for The Atlantic

\n\n

The Falvos are among the many homeowners who’ve decided to investigate green alternatives, deeming a perfect carpet of classic grass too taxing on such resources as time, water and money. Others don’t want to use chemical fertilizers and weedkillers and prefer to provide a habitat for more diverse fauna than a monoculture lawn supports.

\n\n

Why do we even have lawns? With water resources being stretched thin and climate change causing wide spread droughts throughout the country - having a lush green lawn today is simply not sustainable. I mean really - why not just have a dry garden?

\n\n

\"Dry

\n\n

Low maintenance, minimal water usage and great at fighting climate change. Not to mention it is much cheaper. In my opinion it looks nice too.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/08/29/how-not-to-die/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/08/29/how-not-to-die/", "title": "How not to Die", "date_published": "2021-08-29T00:47:22-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-08-29T00:47:22-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Michael Greger from How Not to Die:

\n\n

\n\"\"\n
\nAs cynical as I’ve become about diet and nutrition in this country, I was still surprised by a 2010 report from the National Cancer Institute on the status of the American diet. For example, three out of four Americans don’t eat a single piece of fruit in a given day, and nearly nine out of ten don’t reach the minimum recommended daily intake of vegetables. On a weekly basis, 96% of Americans don’t reach the minimum for orange vegetables (two servings a week), and 99% don’t reach the minimum for whole grains (about three to four ounces a day).

\n\n

Then there was the junk food. The federal guidelines were so lax that that up to 25 percent of your diet could be made up of ‘discretionary calories,’ meaning junk. A quarter of your calories could come from cotton candy washed down with Mountain Dew, and you’d still be within the guidelines. Yet we failed. Astoundingly, 95 percent of Americans exceeded their discretionary calorie allowance. Only one in a thousand American children between the ages of two and eight made the cutoff, consuming less than the equivalent of about a dozen spoonfuls of sugar a day.

\n\n

And we wonder why there is an obesity epidemic?

\n\n

‘In conclusion,’ the researchers wrote, ‘nearly the entire U.S. population consumes a diet that is not on par with recommendations. These findings add another piece to the rather disturbing picture that is emerging of a nation’s diet in crisis.’

\n\n

So put down the soda and the potato chips and grab and apple instead.

\n", "content_html": "

Michael Greger from How Not to Die:

\n\n

\n\"\"\n
\nAs cynical as I’ve become about diet and nutrition in this country, I was still surprised by a 2010 report from the National Cancer Institute on the status of the American diet. For example, three out of four Americans don’t eat a single piece of fruit in a given day, and nearly nine out of ten don’t reach the minimum recommended daily intake of vegetables. On a weekly basis, 96% of Americans don’t reach the minimum for orange vegetables (two servings a week), and 99% don’t reach the minimum for whole grains (about three to four ounces a day).

\n\n

Then there was the junk food. The federal guidelines were so lax that that up to 25 percent of your diet could be made up of ‘discretionary calories,’ meaning junk. A quarter of your calories could come from cotton candy washed down with Mountain Dew, and you’d still be within the guidelines. Yet we failed. Astoundingly, 95 percent of Americans exceeded their discretionary calorie allowance. Only one in a thousand American children between the ages of two and eight made the cutoff, consuming less than the equivalent of about a dozen spoonfuls of sugar a day.

\n\n

And we wonder why there is an obesity epidemic?

\n\n

‘In conclusion,’ the researchers wrote, ‘nearly the entire U.S. population consumes a diet that is not on par with recommendations. These findings add another piece to the rather disturbing picture that is emerging of a nation’s diet in crisis.’

\n\n

So put down the soda and the potato chips and grab and apple instead.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/08/26/costa-ricas-successful-health-care-system/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/08/26/costa-ricas-successful-health-care-system/", "title": "Costa Rica’s Successful Health Care System", "date_published": "2021-08-26T03:00:18-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-08-26T03:00:18-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Atul Gawande investigates how Costa Rica has achieved a higher life expectancy than the US for a fraction of the cost.

\n\n

Life expectancy tends to track national income closely. Costa Rica has emerged as an exception. Searching a newer section of the cemetery that afternoon, I found only one grave for a child. Across all age cohorts, the country’s increase in health has far outpaced its increase in wealth. Although Costa Rica’s per-capita income is a sixth that of the United States — and its per-capita health-care costs are a fraction of ours — life expectancy there is approaching eighty-one years. In the United States, life expectancy peaked at just under seventy-nine years, in 2014, and has declined since.

\n\n

People who have studied Costa Rica, including colleagues of mine at the research and innovation center Ariadne Labs, have identified what seems to be a key factor in its success: the country has made public health — measures to improve the health of the population as a whole — central to the delivery of medical care. Even in countries with robust universal health care, public health is usually an add-on; the vast majority of spending goes to treat the ailments of individuals. In Costa Rica, though, public health has been a priority for decades.

\n\n

The Covid-19 pandemic has revealed the impoverished state of public health even in affluent countries — and the cost of our neglect. Costa Rica shows what an alternative looks like. I travelled with Álvaro Salas to his home town because he had witnessed the results of his country’s expanding commitment to public health, and also because he had helped build the systems that delivered on that commitment. He understood what the country has achieved and how it was done.

\n\n

This is in contrast to United States for profit health care system that favors private individuals who can afford it to get access to better lives, at the expense of everyone else. It is unconscionable that the wealthiest country the world has ever known refuses to make public health a core policy of its society.

\n\n

The concern with the U.S. health system has never been about what it is capable of achieving at its best. It is about the large disparities we tolerate. Higher income, in particular, is associated with much longer life. In a 2016 study, the Harvard economist Raj Chetty and his research team found that the difference in life expectancy between forty-year-olds in the top one per cent of American income distribution and in the bottom one per cent is fifteen years for men and ten years for women.

\n", "content_html": "

Atul Gawande investigates how Costa Rica has achieved a higher life expectancy than the US for a fraction of the cost.

\n\n

Life expectancy tends to track national income closely. Costa Rica has emerged as an exception. Searching a newer section of the cemetery that afternoon, I found only one grave for a child. Across all age cohorts, the country’s increase in health has far outpaced its increase in wealth. Although Costa Rica’s per-capita income is a sixth that of the United States — and its per-capita health-care costs are a fraction of ours — life expectancy there is approaching eighty-one years. In the United States, life expectancy peaked at just under seventy-nine years, in 2014, and has declined since.

\n\n

People who have studied Costa Rica, including colleagues of mine at the research and innovation center Ariadne Labs, have identified what seems to be a key factor in its success: the country has made public health — measures to improve the health of the population as a whole — central to the delivery of medical care. Even in countries with robust universal health care, public health is usually an add-on; the vast majority of spending goes to treat the ailments of individuals. In Costa Rica, though, public health has been a priority for decades.

\n\n

The Covid-19 pandemic has revealed the impoverished state of public health even in affluent countries — and the cost of our neglect. Costa Rica shows what an alternative looks like. I travelled with Álvaro Salas to his home town because he had witnessed the results of his country’s expanding commitment to public health, and also because he had helped build the systems that delivered on that commitment. He understood what the country has achieved and how it was done.

\n\n

This is in contrast to United States for profit health care system that favors private individuals who can afford it to get access to better lives, at the expense of everyone else. It is unconscionable that the wealthiest country the world has ever known refuses to make public health a core policy of its society.

\n\n

The concern with the U.S. health system has never been about what it is capable of achieving at its best. It is about the large disparities we tolerate. Higher income, in particular, is associated with much longer life. In a 2016 study, the Harvard economist Raj Chetty and his research team found that the difference in life expectancy between forty-year-olds in the top one per cent of American income distribution and in the bottom one per cent is fifteen years for men and ten years for women.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/08/26/vaccines-are-saving-lives/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/08/26/vaccines-are-saving-lives/", "title": "Vaccines are saving lives", "date_published": "2021-08-26T02:39:21-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-08-26T02:39:21-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

With Delta endemic in the country, the vaccines are providing extraordinary protection against infections severe enough to land folks in the hospital. In a recent CDC study of infections and hospitalizations in Los Angeles County, the hospitalization rate of unvaccinated people was 29.2 times that of fully vaccinated persons. 29 times is an amazing protection outcome.

\n\n

For anyone still debating if you should take the vaccine - do it as soon as possible.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

With Delta endemic in the country, the vaccines are providing extraordinary protection against infections severe enough to land folks in the hospital. In a recent CDC study of infections and hospitalizations in Los Angeles County, the hospitalization rate of unvaccinated people was 29.2 times that of fully vaccinated persons. 29 times is an amazing protection outcome.

\n\n

For anyone still debating if you should take the vaccine - do it as soon as possible.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/08/24/rethinking-employment/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/08/24/rethinking-employment/", "title": "Rethinking employment", "date_published": "2021-08-24T17:15:32-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-08-24T17:15:32-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Paul Krugman in an opinion piece for The New York Times:

\n\n

My guess, however — and it’s just a guess, although some of the go-to experts here seem to have similar views — is that, as I suggested at the beginning of this article, the pandemic disruption of work was a learning experience. Many of those lucky enough to have been able to work from home realized how much they had hated commuting; some of those who had been working in leisure and hospitality realized, during their months of forced unemployment, how much they had hated their old jobs.

\n\n

And workers are, it seems, willing to pay a price to avoid going back to the way things were. This may, by the way, be especially true for older workers, some of whom seem to have dropped out of the labor force.

\n\n

To the extent that this is the story behind recent “labor shortages,” what we’re looking at is a good thing, not a problem. Perversely, the pandemic may have given many Americans a chance to figure out what really matters to them — and the money they were being paid for unpleasant jobs, some now realize, just wasn’t enough.

\n\n

Bingo.

\n", "content_html": "

Paul Krugman in an opinion piece for The New York Times:

\n\n

My guess, however — and it’s just a guess, although some of the go-to experts here seem to have similar views — is that, as I suggested at the beginning of this article, the pandemic disruption of work was a learning experience. Many of those lucky enough to have been able to work from home realized how much they had hated commuting; some of those who had been working in leisure and hospitality realized, during their months of forced unemployment, how much they had hated their old jobs.

\n\n

And workers are, it seems, willing to pay a price to avoid going back to the way things were. This may, by the way, be especially true for older workers, some of whom seem to have dropped out of the labor force.

\n\n

To the extent that this is the story behind recent “labor shortages,” what we’re looking at is a good thing, not a problem. Perversely, the pandemic may have given many Americans a chance to figure out what really matters to them — and the money they were being paid for unpleasant jobs, some now realize, just wasn’t enough.

\n\n

Bingo.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/08/24/jordan-klepper-in-new-york/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/08/24/jordan-klepper-in-new-york/", "title": "Jordan Klepper in New York", "date_published": "2021-08-24T03:42:29-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-08-24T03:42:29-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\nJordan Klepper proves that stupidity does not respect state boundaries.

\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\nJordan Klepper proves that stupidity does not respect state boundaries.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/08/24/what-freedom-in-america-looks-like/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/08/24/what-freedom-in-america-looks-like/", "title": "What freedom in America looks like", "date_published": "2021-08-24T02:49:34-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-08-24T02:49:34-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\nIgnorance. Entitlement. Paranoia. That is what freedom looks like in America. Even with over 600,000+ dead, Americans are still hesitant to take the vaccine. When did we become a nation that is this selfish and cruel?

\n\n

It’s infuriating. But what more can be done?

\n\n

How about broadcasting the funerals of the dead every evening on the nightly news? Maybe allow cameras in the hospital wards. Let us have a list of the people that die due to Covid-19 in every town square in every community. Maybe if people see the senseless death and suffering we can scare people into taking the vaccine and wearing a mask.

\n\n

Because so far, logic does not seem to be working.

\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\nIgnorance. Entitlement. Paranoia. That is what freedom looks like in America. Even with over 600,000+ dead, Americans are still hesitant to take the vaccine. When did we become a nation that is this selfish and cruel?

\n\n

It’s infuriating. But what more can be done?

\n\n

How about broadcasting the funerals of the dead every evening on the nightly news? Maybe allow cameras in the hospital wards. Let us have a list of the people that die due to Covid-19 in every town square in every community. Maybe if people see the senseless death and suffering we can scare people into taking the vaccine and wearing a mask.

\n\n

Because so far, logic does not seem to be working.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/08/23/fda-grants-approval-to-pfizer-slash-biontech-covid-19-vaccine/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/08/23/fda-grants-approval-to-pfizer-slash-biontech-covid-19-vaccine/", "title": "FDA approves Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine", "date_published": "2021-08-23T15:56:31-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-08-23T15:56:31-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Jacqueline Howard over at CNN:

\n\n

The US Food and Drug Administration on Monday granted full approval to the Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine for people age 16 and older. This is the first coronavirus vaccine approved by the FDA, and is expected to open the door to more vaccine mandates.

\n\n

Finally.

\n\n

Hoping this will finally allow proof of vaccination mandates for restaurants, bars, stores, schools, air and train travel. Everything. Get vaccinated or get left behind.

\n", "content_html": "

Jacqueline Howard over at CNN:

\n\n

The US Food and Drug Administration on Monday granted full approval to the Pfizer/BioNTech Covid-19 vaccine for people age 16 and older. This is the first coronavirus vaccine approved by the FDA, and is expected to open the door to more vaccine mandates.

\n\n

Finally.

\n\n

Hoping this will finally allow proof of vaccination mandates for restaurants, bars, stores, schools, air and train travel. Everything. Get vaccinated or get left behind.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/08/14/billionaires-dont-give-a-f-star-star-k/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/08/14/billionaires-dont-give-a-f-star-star-k/", "title": "Billionaires Don't Give A F**k", "date_published": "2021-08-14T04:12:44-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-08-14T04:12:44-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Julia Horvath makes an excellent point:

\n\n

It would cost a few billion dollars to end the world’s most painful, aggravating problems, like poverty, homelessness, and famine.

\n\n

Any billionaire could pick one such problem and halt it tomorrow. Yet, they choose not to.

\n\n

[…]

\n\n

They squeeze their workers like lemons for profit while they hoard more money than they could spend in several lifetimes.\nTherefore, stop reading about billionaire morning routines. Stop writing about good billionaire habits. Don’t look up to them, paint them as role models, and encourage others or yourself to replicate their success.

\n\n

In short: Don’t defend the indefensible.

\n", "content_html": "

Julia Horvath makes an excellent point:

\n\n

It would cost a few billion dollars to end the world’s most painful, aggravating problems, like poverty, homelessness, and famine.

\n\n

Any billionaire could pick one such problem and halt it tomorrow. Yet, they choose not to.

\n\n

[…]

\n\n

They squeeze their workers like lemons for profit while they hoard more money than they could spend in several lifetimes.\nTherefore, stop reading about billionaire morning routines. Stop writing about good billionaire habits. Don’t look up to them, paint them as role models, and encourage others or yourself to replicate their success.

\n\n

In short: Don’t defend the indefensible.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/08/09/the-american-dream/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/08/09/the-american-dream/", "title": "The American Dream", "date_published": "2021-08-09T02:22:28-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-08-09T02:22:28-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

The vast majority of the people who still believe in the American dream are looking at the past, not the future. They’re looking at their peers in the top 10 or 20 percent, and not everyone else.

They simply don’t see the 60 percent of Americans who can’t afford to pay for a basic emergency. They don’t see the rising tide of young adults who’ve decided they won’t buy homes or start families, because it’s simply too expensive. They don’t see the 52 percent of us who have to move back in with their parents, a trend that’s accelerating.

They don’t want to.

These are the people who defend the American dream. Of course, the truth is a little bit darker. They were simply given an extra pair of dice and more startup money. Now they’re laughing in your face, and moving your piece around the board for you. It’s the American way.

These people are straight up bullies, and what they need more than anything is a hard punch in their pocket books. They need to be reminded that all their “hard won success” was supported by an infrastructure that no longer exists for the vast majority of Americans.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

The vast majority of the people who still believe in the American dream are looking at the past, not the future. They’re looking at their peers in the top 10 or 20 percent, and not everyone else.

They simply don’t see the 60 percent of Americans who can’t afford to pay for a basic emergency. They don’t see the rising tide of young adults who’ve decided they won’t buy homes or start families, because it’s simply too expensive. They don’t see the 52 percent of us who have to move back in with their parents, a trend that’s accelerating.

They don’t want to.

These are the people who defend the American dream. Of course, the truth is a little bit darker. They were simply given an extra pair of dice and more startup money. Now they’re laughing in your face, and moving your piece around the board for you. It’s the American way.

These people are straight up bullies, and what they need more than anything is a hard punch in their pocket books. They need to be reminded that all their “hard won success” was supported by an infrastructure that no longer exists for the vast majority of Americans.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/08/07/finally-corporations-are-stepping-up/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/08/07/finally-corporations-are-stepping-up/", "title": "CNN has fired three employees for going into office without Vaccinations", "date_published": "2021-08-07T00:36:26-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-08-07T00:36:26-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Ted Johnson in Deadline:

\n\n

CNN head Jeff Zucker said that the network has fired three employees for going into the office without being vaccinated against Covid-19, and that parent WarnerMedia may ultimately require proof of the shots. […]

\n\n

“In the past week, we have been made aware of three employees who were coming to the office unvaccinated,” Zucker wrote in an email to staff. “All three have been terminated. Let me be clear — we have a zero-tolerance policy on this. You need to be vaccinated to come to the office. And you need to be vaccinated to work in the field, with other employees, regardless of whether you enter an office or not. Period. We expect that in the weeks ahead, showing proof of vaccination may become a formal part of the WarnerMedia Passcard process. Regardless, our expectations remain in place.”

\n\n

Each individual has a right to choose for themselves. However, that right ends when it infringes on my right to be healthy and safe. We do this in every part of society. We mandate seat belts, make drinking and driving illegal, etc. We enforce all kinds of restrictions for the safety of the greater population.

\n\n

I have been saying this for a long time - if the federal government can’t issue a mandate to force vaccinations - its is upto society to enforce vaccinations. This should be the case for boarding a flight, going to a restaurant, checking into a hotel, going to shopping/entertainment venues. And yes - going to your place of employment.

\n\n

I am tired of stupid American privilege. There are people in other countries that are literally dying waiting for a covid-19 vaccine dose. We have people in this country who are refusing vaccine doses out of ignorance, misguided delusions of ‘freedom’, or a ridiculous sense of ‘owning the libs’.

\n\n

You are done. We have had over 600,000+ deaths from covid over the past year and a half. Sorry but your right to not vaccinate ends when it infringes on my right to live. The time has come where you will get vaccinated if you would like to participate in society. And it’s not the right wing liberals, the media, or the federal government that is enforcing this. It’s we the people.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Ted Johnson in Deadline:

\n\n

CNN head Jeff Zucker said that the network has fired three employees for going into the office without being vaccinated against Covid-19, and that parent WarnerMedia may ultimately require proof of the shots. […]

\n\n

“In the past week, we have been made aware of three employees who were coming to the office unvaccinated,” Zucker wrote in an email to staff. “All three have been terminated. Let me be clear — we have a zero-tolerance policy on this. You need to be vaccinated to come to the office. And you need to be vaccinated to work in the field, with other employees, regardless of whether you enter an office or not. Period. We expect that in the weeks ahead, showing proof of vaccination may become a formal part of the WarnerMedia Passcard process. Regardless, our expectations remain in place.”

\n\n

Each individual has a right to choose for themselves. However, that right ends when it infringes on my right to be healthy and safe. We do this in every part of society. We mandate seat belts, make drinking and driving illegal, etc. We enforce all kinds of restrictions for the safety of the greater population.

\n\n

I have been saying this for a long time - if the federal government can’t issue a mandate to force vaccinations - its is upto society to enforce vaccinations. This should be the case for boarding a flight, going to a restaurant, checking into a hotel, going to shopping/entertainment venues. And yes - going to your place of employment.

\n\n

I am tired of stupid American privilege. There are people in other countries that are literally dying waiting for a covid-19 vaccine dose. We have people in this country who are refusing vaccine doses out of ignorance, misguided delusions of ‘freedom’, or a ridiculous sense of ‘owning the libs’.

\n\n

You are done. We have had over 600,000+ deaths from covid over the past year and a half. Sorry but your right to not vaccinate ends when it infringes on my right to live. The time has come where you will get vaccinated if you would like to participate in society. And it’s not the right wing liberals, the media, or the federal government that is enforcing this. It’s we the people.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/08/04/portraits-of-centenarians/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/08/04/portraits-of-centenarians/", "title": "Portraits of Centenarians", "date_published": "2021-08-04T04:55:25-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-08-04T04:55:25-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Jan Langer shot portraits of Czech people who are 100+ years old in the same style as portraits taken of them in their youth. These are people that lived through both world wars, the cold war, the space age, and the information age. An amazing look at the super humans among us.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Jan Langer shot portraits of Czech people who are 100+ years old in the same style as portraits taken of them in their youth. These are people that lived through both world wars, the cold war, the space age, and the information age. An amazing look at the super humans among us.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/08/02/creative-minimal-photography/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/08/02/creative-minimal-photography/", "title": "Creative Minimal Photography", "date_published": "2021-08-02T18:41:34-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-08-02T18:41:34-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Anna Devís and Daniel Rueda create minimal photographs that incorporate themselves creatively into the image.

\n\n

From their website:

\n\n

Their particular style is characterized by their visual sense of humor, creativity, precision, and a delicate aesthetic inspired by the city, geometry, and minimalism.\nBy combining their spatial awareness and their artistic vision, primarily based on simple shapes and bold patterns, they have succeeded in establishing magnetic and joyful narratives that smartly suggest both the nature of human relations and the fascination with the urban environment.

\n\n

Although it may seem surprising or hard to believe, besides some basic image processing, Anna and Daniel create these surreal scenes without the use of photo editing software. Instead, they carefully set the scene in real life using all sorts of everyday objects, unexpected locations, and tons of natural light.

\n\n

Check out this great interview with the duo at The Darkroom Podcast:

\n\n\n\n\n


\nHere are some images from their website:

\n\n

\n\n

\n\n

\n\n

\n\n

\n", "content_html": "

Anna Devís and Daniel Rueda create minimal photographs that incorporate themselves creatively into the image.

\n\n

From their website:

\n\n

Their particular style is characterized by their visual sense of humor, creativity, precision, and a delicate aesthetic inspired by the city, geometry, and minimalism.\nBy combining their spatial awareness and their artistic vision, primarily based on simple shapes and bold patterns, they have succeeded in establishing magnetic and joyful narratives that smartly suggest both the nature of human relations and the fascination with the urban environment.

\n\n

Although it may seem surprising or hard to believe, besides some basic image processing, Anna and Daniel create these surreal scenes without the use of photo editing software. Instead, they carefully set the scene in real life using all sorts of everyday objects, unexpected locations, and tons of natural light.

\n\n

Check out this great interview with the duo at The Darkroom Podcast:

\n\n\n\n\n


\nHere are some images from their website:

\n\n

\n\n

\n\n

\n\n

\n\n

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/08/02/to-all-the-apple-is-doomed-folks/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/08/02/to-all-the-apple-is-doomed-folks/", "title": "To all the 'Apple Is Doomed' folks", "date_published": "2021-08-02T10:06:55-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-08-02T10:06:55-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Josh Centers over at TidBITS:

\n\n

Apple has not just a diverse portfolio, but a diverse portfolio of strong products backed by both physical and online distribution options that keep revenues balanced even in the toughest times. A brick-and-mortar retailer like Dollar General would be devastated by store closures, but for Apple, it was only an annoyance that could be mitigated by the Apple online store. Netflix lives or dies by its subscriber figures, but a dip in Apple TV+ subscriptions is mitigated by a music service, a credit card, warranties, and even a fitness service. HP is nothing without PC and printer sales, but the Mac can coast along at times thanks to Apple’s other offerings.

\n\n

Even the iPhone, the linchpin of Apple’s renaissance, doesn’t make or break the company, as shown in the tumultuous Q2 2020, when the Services and Wearables category pushed Apple to very slight growth despite declines in every other category (see “Apple’s Q2 2020 Was a “Very Different Quarter” Than Expected,” 30 April 2020). The company can monetize the millions of existing iPhones with services and accessories, and then bolster its financial results with Mac and iPad sales.

\n\n

To think that Apple is just an iPhone company is ignorant.

\n", "content_html": "

Josh Centers over at TidBITS:

\n\n

Apple has not just a diverse portfolio, but a diverse portfolio of strong products backed by both physical and online distribution options that keep revenues balanced even in the toughest times. A brick-and-mortar retailer like Dollar General would be devastated by store closures, but for Apple, it was only an annoyance that could be mitigated by the Apple online store. Netflix lives or dies by its subscriber figures, but a dip in Apple TV+ subscriptions is mitigated by a music service, a credit card, warranties, and even a fitness service. HP is nothing without PC and printer sales, but the Mac can coast along at times thanks to Apple’s other offerings.

\n\n

Even the iPhone, the linchpin of Apple’s renaissance, doesn’t make or break the company, as shown in the tumultuous Q2 2020, when the Services and Wearables category pushed Apple to very slight growth despite declines in every other category (see “Apple’s Q2 2020 Was a “Very Different Quarter” Than Expected,” 30 April 2020). The company can monetize the millions of existing iPhones with services and accessories, and then bolster its financial results with Mac and iPad sales.

\n\n

To think that Apple is just an iPhone company is ignorant.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/07/31/mandate-vacinnations/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/07/31/mandate-vacinnations/", "title": "Mandate Vacinnations", "date_published": "2021-07-31T03:43:08-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-07-31T03:43:08-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Aaron E. Carroll, chief health officer for Indiana University in a guest essay :

\n\n

Many may read the C.D.C.’s continued focus on masking and distancing as an acknowledgment that the vaccines don’t work well enough. Leaning heavily on masking and distancing is what we did when we didn’t have vaccinations. Today, such recommendations are less likely to succeed because they are more likely to be followed by those already primed to listen — the vaccinated — and to be fought and ignored by those who aren’t.

\n\n

Hospitalizations and deaths are rising in some areas not because someone didn’t wear a mask at the ballgame. They’re occurring because too many people are not immunized.

\n\n

This is why I’ve advocated vaccine mandates. I don’t understand how we can mandate wearing masks but not getting vaccinations.

\n\n

Mandate proof of vaccination for basic access - sports stadiums, restaurants, boarding public transportation and airlines. In addition we should mandate masks and social distancing.

\n", "content_html": "

Aaron E. Carroll, chief health officer for Indiana University in a guest essay :

\n\n

Many may read the C.D.C.’s continued focus on masking and distancing as an acknowledgment that the vaccines don’t work well enough. Leaning heavily on masking and distancing is what we did when we didn’t have vaccinations. Today, such recommendations are less likely to succeed because they are more likely to be followed by those already primed to listen — the vaccinated — and to be fought and ignored by those who aren’t.

\n\n

Hospitalizations and deaths are rising in some areas not because someone didn’t wear a mask at the ballgame. They’re occurring because too many people are not immunized.

\n\n

This is why I’ve advocated vaccine mandates. I don’t understand how we can mandate wearing masks but not getting vaccinations.

\n\n

Mandate proof of vaccination for basic access - sports stadiums, restaurants, boarding public transportation and airlines. In addition we should mandate masks and social distancing.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/07/28/programming-in-your-50s/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/07/28/programming-in-your-50s/", "title": "Programming in your 50s", "date_published": "2021-07-28T15:41:02-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-07-28T15:41:02-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Next year will mark my 30th year as a professional developer. Thats nearly three decades in the software industry. When I took my first programming job - cell phones were not common, Apple was about to go bankrupt, the Web wasn’t a thing yet, IBM was the largest computer company, Windows 95 was just about to be released, we watched movies and consumed music on physical media, Google/Facebook/Netflix didn’t exist.

\n\n

Yea. I am freaking old.

\n\n

The development industry is more fickle than the fashion industry. I have worked on every shift from desktop command line software to modern SAAS serverless environments. Assembler, C/C++, Java, Delphi, Ruby, NodeJS to Rust. From procedural to object oriented and back to functional. From microcontrollers with 4k firmware to multi gigahertz workstation software to cloud software (I really hate that term.) Been there, done that.

\n\n

We still deal with the exact same problems I dealt with in the industry from the business and management as I did when I was in my 20s.

\n\n

I am tired. I need a break. Been thinking about a career change. Just to get the creative juices flowing again.

\n\n

Then I came across Yossi Kreinin’s excellent article - Do you really want to be making this much money when you’re 50?. And this excerpt really spoke to me:

\n\n

What else do you want to be doing when you're 50? Give me a profession remotely close to programming in the following ways:

- Little or no required education
- Good compensation, even for mediocre performers
- Millions of jobs
- No physical effort
- No health or legal risks

Programming is money for nothing. Programming is very easy to enter and extremely hard to quit. What would you do instead?

\n\n\n

It gave me pause. We, the development community, really do have it good. And the more I think about it the more I realize - I just need to adjust my outlook. Or maybe just develop/concentrate on other hobbies away from coding.

\n\n

Looking at the alternatives - I truly don’t want to do anything else.

\n", "content_html": "

Next year will mark my 30th year as a professional developer. Thats nearly three decades in the software industry. When I took my first programming job - cell phones were not common, Apple was about to go bankrupt, the Web wasn’t a thing yet, IBM was the largest computer company, Windows 95 was just about to be released, we watched movies and consumed music on physical media, Google/Facebook/Netflix didn’t exist.

\n\n

Yea. I am freaking old.

\n\n

The development industry is more fickle than the fashion industry. I have worked on every shift from desktop command line software to modern SAAS serverless environments. Assembler, C/C++, Java, Delphi, Ruby, NodeJS to Rust. From procedural to object oriented and back to functional. From microcontrollers with 4k firmware to multi gigahertz workstation software to cloud software (I really hate that term.) Been there, done that.

\n\n

We still deal with the exact same problems I dealt with in the industry from the business and management as I did when I was in my 20s.

\n\n

I am tired. I need a break. Been thinking about a career change. Just to get the creative juices flowing again.

\n\n

Then I came across Yossi Kreinin’s excellent article - Do you really want to be making this much money when you’re 50?. And this excerpt really spoke to me:

\n\n

What else do you want to be doing when you're 50? Give me a profession remotely close to programming in the following ways:

- Little or no required education
- Good compensation, even for mediocre performers
- Millions of jobs
- No physical effort
- No health or legal risks

Programming is money for nothing. Programming is very easy to enter and extremely hard to quit. What would you do instead?

\n\n\n

It gave me pause. We, the development community, really do have it good. And the more I think about it the more I realize - I just need to adjust my outlook. Or maybe just develop/concentrate on other hobbies away from coding.

\n\n

Looking at the alternatives - I truly don’t want to do anything else.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/07/27/ted-lasso-the-curious-idiot/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/07/27/ted-lasso-the-curious-idiot/", "title": "Ted Lasso - the Curious Idiot", "date_published": "2021-07-27T13:46:20-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-07-27T13:46:20-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n



\nCo-creator and star Jason Sudeikis on where the idea for the show came from:

\n\n

The thing Bill and I talked about in the pitch was this antithesis of the cocktail of a human man who is both ignorant and arrogant, which lo and behold, a Batman-villain version of it became president of the United States right around the same time. What if you played an ignorant guy who was actually curious? When someone used a big word like “vernacular,” he didn’t act like he knew it, but just stops the meeting like, “Question, what does that mean?”

\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n



\nCo-creator and star Jason Sudeikis on where the idea for the show came from:

\n\n

The thing Bill and I talked about in the pitch was this antithesis of the cocktail of a human man who is both ignorant and arrogant, which lo and behold, a Batman-villain version of it became president of the United States right around the same time. What if you played an ignorant guy who was actually curious? When someone used a big word like “vernacular,” he didn’t act like he knew it, but just stops the meeting like, “Question, what does that mean?”

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/07/25/the-new-covid-panic/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/07/25/the-new-covid-panic/", "title": "Covid-19 is endemic. What now?", "date_published": "2021-07-25T03:23:00-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-07-25T03:23:00-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Lets face reality. Covid-19 is endemic now — how do we live with that? Susan Matthews has a great write up for those of us who are vaccinated and trying to figure out what their risks are regarding the much more transmissible delta variant of SARS-CoV-2.

\n\n

All of this is making people — yes, probably mostly vaccinated people — rethink the basic questions they thought their vaccine had answered for them: Can I go to restaurants and bars unmasked? Can I go back to the office? Can I see my grandma? Can I go on vacation? Can I unmask at my people-facing job? Can I have a wedding, or a party? The answer to those questions is not quite as easy as “yes, if you’re vaccinated.” It depends partly on how many in your group are vaccinated, but the actual answer is basically the same as it’s been all pandemic: It depends on your risk tolerance, it depends on what is happening with case counts locally (though, as more people travel, this might become a less reliable tool), and it depends on any unique risk factors in your group. Kass’ perspective felt novel to me: She said she suspects that in the end, a lot of people are going to end up boosting their immunity by suffering through a mild case of COVID. So no one should feel that bad about getting sick after they’re vaxxed. What matters is getting the order right: “If everyone who gets vaccinated still gets COVID but doesn’t die, that’s a success,” she said. The issue is that it doesn’t feel like a success for vaccinated people. Plus, “if you get infected after you’re vaxxed, it’s all you talk about,” she said. And right now, that’s understandably freaking out a lot of vaccinated people who thought they were in the clear.

\n", "content_html": "

Lets face reality. Covid-19 is endemic now — how do we live with that? Susan Matthews has a great write up for those of us who are vaccinated and trying to figure out what their risks are regarding the much more transmissible delta variant of SARS-CoV-2.

\n\n

All of this is making people — yes, probably mostly vaccinated people — rethink the basic questions they thought their vaccine had answered for them: Can I go to restaurants and bars unmasked? Can I go back to the office? Can I see my grandma? Can I go on vacation? Can I unmask at my people-facing job? Can I have a wedding, or a party? The answer to those questions is not quite as easy as “yes, if you’re vaccinated.” It depends partly on how many in your group are vaccinated, but the actual answer is basically the same as it’s been all pandemic: It depends on your risk tolerance, it depends on what is happening with case counts locally (though, as more people travel, this might become a less reliable tool), and it depends on any unique risk factors in your group. Kass’ perspective felt novel to me: She said she suspects that in the end, a lot of people are going to end up boosting their immunity by suffering through a mild case of COVID. So no one should feel that bad about getting sick after they’re vaxxed. What matters is getting the order right: “If everyone who gets vaccinated still gets COVID but doesn’t die, that’s a success,” she said. The issue is that it doesn’t feel like a success for vaccinated people. Plus, “if you get infected after you’re vaxxed, it’s all you talk about,” she said. And right now, that’s understandably freaking out a lot of vaccinated people who thought they were in the clear.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/07/22/will-noonan/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/07/22/will-noonan/", "title": "Will Noonan on Blue Origin launch", "date_published": "2021-07-22T19:02:11-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-07-22T19:02:11-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n

My Dad got to watch Armstrong walk on the moon.

I get to watch the guy who killed bookstores ride a dick into space. pic.twitter.com/Tv2sL6SKMN

— Will Noonan (@willnoonan) July 20, 2021
\n
\n\n\n

Compensating for something?

\n", "content_html": "
\n

My Dad got to watch Armstrong walk on the moon.

I get to watch the guy who killed bookstores ride a dick into space. pic.twitter.com/Tv2sL6SKMN

— Will Noonan (@willnoonan) July 20, 2021
\n
\n\n\n

Compensating for something?

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/07/21/going-to-space-is-tone-deaf/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/07/21/going-to-space-is-tone-deaf/", "title": "Going to space is tone deaf", "date_published": "2021-07-21T09:51:28-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-07-21T09:51:28-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Shannon Stirone in writing for The Atlantic:

\n\n

Could there be a worse time for two über-rich rocket owners to take a quick jaunt toward the dark? Especially in the United States, the climate crisis is now actually starting to feel like a crisis. The western U.S. is in the thick of fire season, experiencing record-breaking drought and temperatures. Last week, Bezos’s hometown of Seattle hit 108 degrees. Hurricane season is starting early, and a once-in-200-years flood just ravaged northern Mississippi. Oh yeah, then there’s the pandemic that is very much still not over. Anyone would want a break from this planet, but the billionaires are virtually the only ones who are able to leave.

\n\n

Leaving Earth right now isn’t just bad optics; it’s almost a scene out of a twisted B-list thriller: The world is drowning and scorching, and two of the wealthiest men decide to … race in their private rocket ships to see who can get to space a few days before the other. If this were a movie, these men would be Gordon Gekko and Hal 9000—both venerated and hated. Maybe, I don’t know, delay the missions a bit until people around the world are no longer desperately waiting for vaccines to save them from a deadly virus.

\n", "content_html": "

Shannon Stirone in writing for The Atlantic:

\n\n

Could there be a worse time for two über-rich rocket owners to take a quick jaunt toward the dark? Especially in the United States, the climate crisis is now actually starting to feel like a crisis. The western U.S. is in the thick of fire season, experiencing record-breaking drought and temperatures. Last week, Bezos’s hometown of Seattle hit 108 degrees. Hurricane season is starting early, and a once-in-200-years flood just ravaged northern Mississippi. Oh yeah, then there’s the pandemic that is very much still not over. Anyone would want a break from this planet, but the billionaires are virtually the only ones who are able to leave.

\n\n

Leaving Earth right now isn’t just bad optics; it’s almost a scene out of a twisted B-list thriller: The world is drowning and scorching, and two of the wealthiest men decide to … race in their private rocket ships to see who can get to space a few days before the other. If this were a movie, these men would be Gordon Gekko and Hal 9000—both venerated and hated. Maybe, I don’t know, delay the missions a bit until people around the world are no longer desperately waiting for vaccines to save them from a deadly virus.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/07/10/welcome-to-reality/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/07/10/welcome-to-reality/", "title": "Back to reality", "date_published": "2021-07-10T02:38:19-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-07-10T02:38:19-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

And while it’s painful to pay subsidy-free prices for our extravagances, there’s also a certain justice to it. Hiring a private driver to shuttle you across Los Angeles during rush hour should cost more than $16, if everyone in that transaction is being fairly compensated. Getting someone to clean your house, do your laundry or deliver your dinner should be a luxury, if there’s no exploitation involved. The fact that some high-end services are no longer easily affordable by the merely semi-affluent may seem like a worrying development, but maybe it’s a sign of progress.

\n\n\n

This is a good thing for everyone going forward.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

And while it’s painful to pay subsidy-free prices for our extravagances, there’s also a certain justice to it. Hiring a private driver to shuttle you across Los Angeles during rush hour should cost more than $16, if everyone in that transaction is being fairly compensated. Getting someone to clean your house, do your laundry or deliver your dinner should be a luxury, if there’s no exploitation involved. The fact that some high-end services are no longer easily affordable by the merely semi-affluent may seem like a worrying development, but maybe it’s a sign of progress.

\n\n\n

This is a good thing for everyone going forward.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/07/06/the-new-real-estate-normal/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/07/06/the-new-real-estate-normal/", "title": "The new real estate normal", "date_published": "2021-07-06T00:25:49-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-07-06T00:25:49-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Jared A. Brock makes an interesting point about the new real estate normal:

\n\n

For years, banks and ultra-elites (bankrolled by years of money-printing, corporate socialism, and bailouts) have been using their wealth to take control of the world and rent it back to us.

Apple did it with music.
Netflix did it with movies.
Nestle did it with water.
Uber did it with cars.
Airbnb hosts and landlords did it with houses.
The lecherous gig economy did it with employment.

Instead of buying and owning products, now we’re all just renting “services.”

After all, why should people like you and me build equity when a multinational corporation can build equity instead?

So long as your monthly housing-as-service payment remains relatively “affordable” (AKA half your income), the ownership class doesn’t care if it’s rent instead of a mortgage. Thus, house prices continue to rise against all reason as private equity and rent-seeking investors outbid families for control of shelter. Sure, there might be more real estate price crashes, but they’ll just be bigger versions of 2008 — buying opportunities for the hyper-elite. Your home is now a future hedge fund investment

\n\n\n

So what can you do about it? It’s actually simple. Here are the three simple rules that have worked for me:

\n\n
    \n
  1. Buy a home as soon as possible that is well below your means.
  2. \n
  3. Pay off the mortgage in less then 10 years. Do what ever it takes (within the law and ethical conduct) to do this.
  4. \n
  5. Never upgrade to a larger home unless you are paying for it in cash.
  6. \n
\n\n", "content_html": "

Jared A. Brock makes an interesting point about the new real estate normal:

\n\n

For years, banks and ultra-elites (bankrolled by years of money-printing, corporate socialism, and bailouts) have been using their wealth to take control of the world and rent it back to us.

Apple did it with music.
Netflix did it with movies.
Nestle did it with water.
Uber did it with cars.
Airbnb hosts and landlords did it with houses.
The lecherous gig economy did it with employment.

Instead of buying and owning products, now we’re all just renting “services.”

After all, why should people like you and me build equity when a multinational corporation can build equity instead?

So long as your monthly housing-as-service payment remains relatively “affordable” (AKA half your income), the ownership class doesn’t care if it’s rent instead of a mortgage. Thus, house prices continue to rise against all reason as private equity and rent-seeking investors outbid families for control of shelter. Sure, there might be more real estate price crashes, but they’ll just be bigger versions of 2008 — buying opportunities for the hyper-elite. Your home is now a future hedge fund investment

\n\n\n

So what can you do about it? It’s actually simple. Here are the three simple rules that have worked for me:

\n\n
    \n
  1. Buy a home as soon as possible that is well below your means.
  2. \n
  3. Pay off the mortgage in less then 10 years. Do what ever it takes (within the law and ethical conduct) to do this.
  4. \n
  5. Never upgrade to a larger home unless you are paying for it in cash.
  6. \n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/07/01/why-movies-today-are-terrible/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/07/01/why-movies-today-are-terrible/", "title": "I miss loving Star Wars", "date_published": "2021-07-01T21:39:47-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-07-01T21:39:47-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Chris Gore on the problem with today’s movies and the Hollywood machinery behind it:

\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Chris Gore on the problem with today’s movies and the Hollywood machinery behind it:

\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/07/01/remembering-donald-rumsfeld/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/07/01/remembering-donald-rumsfeld/", "title": "Remembering Donald Rumsfeld", "date_published": "2021-07-01T15:08:19-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-07-01T15:08:19-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

George Packer in The Atlantic:

\n\n

Rumsfeld was the worst secretary of defense in American history. Being newly dead shouldn’t spare him this distinction. He was worse than the closest contender, Robert McNamara, and that is not a competition to judge lightly. McNamara’s folly was that of a whole generation of Cold Warriors who believed that Indochina was a vital front in the struggle against communism. His growing realization that the Vietnam War was an unwinnable waste made him more insightful than some of his peers; his decision to keep this realization from the American public made him an unforgivable coward. But Rumsfeld was the chief advocate of every disaster in the years after September 11. Wherever the United States government contemplated a wrong turn, Rumsfeld was there first with his hard smile — squinting, mocking the cautious, shoving his country deeper into a hole. His fatal judgment was equaled only by his absolute self-assurance. He lacked the courage to doubt himself. He lacked the wisdom to change his mind.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

George Packer in The Atlantic:

\n\n

Rumsfeld was the worst secretary of defense in American history. Being newly dead shouldn’t spare him this distinction. He was worse than the closest contender, Robert McNamara, and that is not a competition to judge lightly. McNamara’s folly was that of a whole generation of Cold Warriors who believed that Indochina was a vital front in the struggle against communism. His growing realization that the Vietnam War was an unwinnable waste made him more insightful than some of his peers; his decision to keep this realization from the American public made him an unforgivable coward. But Rumsfeld was the chief advocate of every disaster in the years after September 11. Wherever the United States government contemplated a wrong turn, Rumsfeld was there first with his hard smile — squinting, mocking the cautious, shoving his country deeper into a hole. His fatal judgment was equaled only by his absolute self-assurance. He lacked the courage to doubt himself. He lacked the wisdom to change his mind.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/06/30/mrna-the-good-and-the-bad/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/06/30/mrna-the-good-and-the-bad/", "title": "mRNA - the good and the bad", "date_published": "2021-06-30T03:26:43-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-06-30T03:26:43-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Excellent write up by Derek Lowe in Science Translation Medicine on the exciting potential and pitfalls of mRNA technology.

\n\n

So mRNA-based techniques have a lot of power and a lot of promise. But there’s definitely a low-hanging-fruit area here, and that’s infectious disease vaccines. Beyond that the promise holds up, big-time, but the difficulties mount up as well. It’s going to be a long story with a lot of plot twists, but I’m glad we’re telling it.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Excellent write up by Derek Lowe in Science Translation Medicine on the exciting potential and pitfalls of mRNA technology.

\n\n

So mRNA-based techniques have a lot of power and a lot of promise. But there’s definitely a low-hanging-fruit area here, and that’s infectious disease vaccines. Beyond that the promise holds up, big-time, but the difficulties mount up as well. It’s going to be a long story with a lot of plot twists, but I’m glad we’re telling it.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/06/29/sh-star-t-leica-photographers-say-dot-dot-dot/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/06/29/sh-star-t-leica-photographers-say-dot-dot-dot/", "title": "S**t Leica Photographers Say…", "date_published": "2021-06-29T01:51:35-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-06-29T01:51:35-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\nThe one that makes me laugh every time I hear it:

\n\n

Leica has a look. There is nothing like the Leica look.

\n\n

Don’t get me started on S**t Fuji photographers say…

\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\nThe one that makes me laugh every time I hear it:

\n\n

Leica has a look. There is nothing like the Leica look.

\n\n

Don’t get me started on S**t Fuji photographers say…

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/06/27/the-apple-collection/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/06/27/the-apple-collection/", "title": "I Am Legend", "date_published": "2021-06-27T01:59:25-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-06-27T01:59:25-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

So, what differs Apple among many thousands of companies and competitors, allowing it to earn billions of dollars? After all, now Apple is more than new IT technologies and modern Apple products. The company has its own unique reputation, a recognizable Apple design, a successful public image and a whole culture in the industry of consumer electronics. In a nutshell, Apple and the Apple collection of devices are a legend.

\n\n\n

I just wish Apple would go back to their 1977 logo.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

So, what differs Apple among many thousands of companies and competitors, allowing it to earn billions of dollars? After all, now Apple is more than new IT technologies and modern Apple products. The company has its own unique reputation, a recognizable Apple design, a successful public image and a whole culture in the industry of consumer electronics. In a nutshell, Apple and the Apple collection of devices are a legend.

\n\n\n

I just wish Apple would go back to their 1977 logo.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/06/27/ted-lasso-welcome-wagon/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/06/27/ted-lasso-welcome-wagon/", "title": "The Ted Lasso welcome wagon", "date_published": "2021-06-27T01:43:17-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-06-27T01:43:17-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\nCan’t wait for Ted Lasso season 2 to be on air. The first season was a very welcome diversion during the height of the pandemic.

\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\nCan’t wait for Ted Lasso season 2 to be on air. The first season was a very welcome diversion during the height of the pandemic.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/06/26/sweetwater-gearfest-2021-lisa-loeb/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/06/26/sweetwater-gearfest-2021-lisa-loeb/", "title": "Sweetwater GearFest 2021 - Lisa Loeb", "date_published": "2021-06-26T11:42:06-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-06-26T11:42:06-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\n
\nLisa Loeb performing ‘Stay (I Missed You)’ and ‘Shine’. When you can sound that good with just an acoustic and your voice - thats talent.

\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\n
\nLisa Loeb performing ‘Stay (I Missed You)’ and ‘Shine’. When you can sound that good with just an acoustic and your voice - thats talent.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/06/26/i-swallowed-my-airpod/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/06/26/i-swallowed-my-airpod/", "title": "I swallowed my AirPod", "date_published": "2021-06-26T02:10:55-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-06-26T02:10:55-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Heather drove me to the endoscopy centre, where the AirPod was got back out via my mouth using a tube with a lasso attachment. It was extremely uncomfortable, but I was sedated and so only half awake. A few minutes later, I was given the AirPod in a neat little bag.

I tried it as soon as I got home. It works fine, although the microphone is less reliable than it was. I’ll never know for certain how I managed to swallow it; my theory is that it dropped on to the pillow, ended up next to my mouth and got sucked in when I yawned. In retrospect, I’m glad the “find my AirPod” attempt didn’t work — I would have freaked out if my throat had beeped.

\n\n\n

What is really amazing is the AirPod still worked! Now this would make a great AirPods commercial.

\n", "content_html": "

Heather drove me to the endoscopy centre, where the AirPod was got back out via my mouth using a tube with a lasso attachment. It was extremely uncomfortable, but I was sedated and so only half awake. A few minutes later, I was given the AirPod in a neat little bag.

I tried it as soon as I got home. It works fine, although the microphone is less reliable than it was. I’ll never know for certain how I managed to swallow it; my theory is that it dropped on to the pillow, ended up next to my mouth and got sucked in when I yawned. In retrospect, I’m glad the “find my AirPod” attempt didn’t work — I would have freaked out if my throat had beeped.

\n\n\n

What is really amazing is the AirPod still worked! Now this would make a great AirPods commercial.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/06/18/linus-torvalds-to-anti-vaxers/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/06/18/linus-torvalds-to-anti-vaxers/", "title": "Linus Torvalds to anti-vaxers", "date_published": "2021-06-18T03:04:04-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-06-18T03:04:04-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Please keep your insane and technically incorrect anti-vax comments to yourself.

You don’t know what you are talking about, you don’t know what mRNA is, and you’re spreading idiotic lies. Maybe you do so unwittingly, because of bad education. Maybe you do so because you’ve talked to “experts” or watched youtube videos by charlatans that don’t know what they are talking about.

But dammit, regardless of where you have gotten your mis-information from, any Linux kernel discussion list isn’t going to have your idiotic drivel pass uncontested from me.

\n\n\n

Tell us how you really feel.

\n", "content_html": "

Please keep your insane and technically incorrect anti-vax comments to yourself.

You don’t know what you are talking about, you don’t know what mRNA is, and you’re spreading idiotic lies. Maybe you do so unwittingly, because of bad education. Maybe you do so because you’ve talked to “experts” or watched youtube videos by charlatans that don’t know what they are talking about.

But dammit, regardless of where you have gotten your mis-information from, any Linux kernel discussion list isn’t going to have your idiotic drivel pass uncontested from me.

\n\n\n

Tell us how you really feel.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/06/18/sharks-from-above/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/06/18/sharks-from-above/", "title": "sharks from above", "date_published": "2021-06-18T02:50:22-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-06-18T02:50:22-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\nCarlos Gauna’s amazing footage of sharks from above captured off the coast of California using aerial drones.

\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\nCarlos Gauna’s amazing footage of sharks from above captured off the coast of California using aerial drones.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/06/17/live-like-the-danes/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/06/17/live-like-the-danes/", "title": "Live like a Dane", "date_published": "2021-06-17T01:39:14-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-06-17T01:39:14-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

In an excellent article by Anastasia Frugaard:

\n\n

When adjusting to life in Copenhagen, I noticed that things were very different in Denmark from back home in New York City. Locals seemed more relaxed, less addicted to their phones, more present with one another. Streets were quieter, shops and restaurants played gentle music on low volume. It’s almost as if people there didn’t need distractions from their reality.

Was it just the famous work-life balance and social welfare system or were there other, lesser known, reasons for their contentment?

\n\n\n

Its surprisingly simple - get some exercise daily, cook at home, shop less, and eat plenty of candy.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

In an excellent article by Anastasia Frugaard:

\n\n

When adjusting to life in Copenhagen, I noticed that things were very different in Denmark from back home in New York City. Locals seemed more relaxed, less addicted to their phones, more present with one another. Streets were quieter, shops and restaurants played gentle music on low volume. It’s almost as if people there didn’t need distractions from their reality.

Was it just the famous work-life balance and social welfare system or were there other, lesser known, reasons for their contentment?

\n\n\n

Its surprisingly simple - get some exercise daily, cook at home, shop less, and eat plenty of candy.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/06/14/portal/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/06/14/portal/", "title": "pOrtal", "date_published": "2021-06-14T15:08:37-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-06-14T15:08:37-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\n\n

Born in Vilnius, Lithuania, pOrtal is a new wave community accelerator, aiming to bring people of different cultures together and encouraging them to rethink the feeling and meaning of unity. The pOrtal brings a new approach, especially important in times like these when we are being separated by extremely viral polarizing ideas and narratives.

The pOrtal team will connect the world with dozens of pOrtals in the near future – you, your community, and your city are welcome to join us on this mission! Let's transcend a sense of separation and be the pioneers of unity!

\n\n\n

\n\n

Okay the video and description is a bit over the top - but it is an amazing idea. I am all for anything that brings communities together. I wonder how much of this was inspired by the Star Trek episode of ‘The City on the Edge of Forever’.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\n\n

Born in Vilnius, Lithuania, pOrtal is a new wave community accelerator, aiming to bring people of different cultures together and encouraging them to rethink the feeling and meaning of unity. The pOrtal brings a new approach, especially important in times like these when we are being separated by extremely viral polarizing ideas and narratives.

The pOrtal team will connect the world with dozens of pOrtals in the near future – you, your community, and your city are welcome to join us on this mission! Let's transcend a sense of separation and be the pioneers of unity!

\n\n\n

\n\n

Okay the video and description is a bit over the top - but it is an amazing idea. I am all for anything that brings communities together. I wonder how much of this was inspired by the Star Trek episode of ‘The City on the Edge of Forever’.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/06/14/camera-shutter-sounds/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/06/14/camera-shutter-sounds/", "title": "Camera Shutter Sounds", "date_published": "2021-06-14T14:26:58-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-06-14T14:26:58-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\nSails Chong recorded the sounds of camera 18 camera shutters. With the vast majority of the population switching to cellphone cameras - that is a sound that will be heard less and less.

\n\n

For those of us born before 1990 the comforting click of a camera shutter let us know that a moment was captured. It was committed to a physical medium. It will be printed. You will be able to look at that physical, printed moment of time no matter if you cell phone dies, backed it up to that remote hard drive and uploaded it to the cloud (I really hate that term) for sharing.

\n\n

Curious that the most iconic shutter sound of them all - the Leica - is not represented here.

\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\nSails Chong recorded the sounds of camera 18 camera shutters. With the vast majority of the population switching to cellphone cameras - that is a sound that will be heard less and less.

\n\n

For those of us born before 1990 the comforting click of a camera shutter let us know that a moment was captured. It was committed to a physical medium. It will be printed. You will be able to look at that physical, printed moment of time no matter if you cell phone dies, backed it up to that remote hard drive and uploaded it to the cloud (I really hate that term) for sharing.

\n\n

Curious that the most iconic shutter sound of them all - the Leica - is not represented here.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/06/12/could-this-be-the-breaking-point/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/06/12/could-this-be-the-breaking-point/", "title": "Could this be the breaking point?", "date_published": "2021-06-12T01:19:37-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-06-12T01:19:37-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

$56,000 for a drug that the FDA’s own advisors voted against due to safety reasons. Its time we overhaul the entire United States medical system.

\n\n

Less appreciated is how the drug’s approval could trigger hundreds of billions of dollars of new government spending, all without a vote in Congress or indeed any public debate over the drug’s value. Aduhelm’s manufacturer, Biogen, announced on Monday that it would price the drug at an average of $56,000 a year per patient, a figure that doesn’t include the additional imaging and scans needed to diagnose patients or to monitor them for serious side effects.

The federal government will bear the brunt of the new spending. The overwhelming majority of people with Alzheimer’s disease are eligible for Medicare, the federally run insurance program for elderly and disabled Americans. If even one-third of the estimated 6 million people with Alzheimer’s in the United States receives the new treatment, health-care spending could swell by $112 billion annually.

To put that figure in perspective, in 2020, Medicare spent about $90 billion on prescription drugs for 46 million Americans through the Part D program, which covers prescription medication that you pick up at your local pharmacy. We could wind up spending more than that for Aduhelm alone.

\n\n\n

And from Physcians Weekly:

\n\n

However, none of the 11 members of the FDA advisory committee that reviewed the new treatment considered the drug ready for approval. Ten voted against approval and one was uncertain, The Times reported. The FDA is not required to follow its advisory committees’ recommendations. The committee said there was no conclusive evidence that Aduhelm could slow mental decline in people in the early stages of Alzheimer disease and noted that it could cause potentially serious side effects of brain swelling and brain bleeding.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

$56,000 for a drug that the FDA’s own advisors voted against due to safety reasons. Its time we overhaul the entire United States medical system.

\n\n

Less appreciated is how the drug’s approval could trigger hundreds of billions of dollars of new government spending, all without a vote in Congress or indeed any public debate over the drug’s value. Aduhelm’s manufacturer, Biogen, announced on Monday that it would price the drug at an average of $56,000 a year per patient, a figure that doesn’t include the additional imaging and scans needed to diagnose patients or to monitor them for serious side effects.

The federal government will bear the brunt of the new spending. The overwhelming majority of people with Alzheimer’s disease are eligible for Medicare, the federally run insurance program for elderly and disabled Americans. If even one-third of the estimated 6 million people with Alzheimer’s in the United States receives the new treatment, health-care spending could swell by $112 billion annually.

To put that figure in perspective, in 2020, Medicare spent about $90 billion on prescription drugs for 46 million Americans through the Part D program, which covers prescription medication that you pick up at your local pharmacy. We could wind up spending more than that for Aduhelm alone.

\n\n\n

And from Physcians Weekly:

\n\n

However, none of the 11 members of the FDA advisory committee that reviewed the new treatment considered the drug ready for approval. Ten voted against approval and one was uncertain, The Times reported. The FDA is not required to follow its advisory committees’ recommendations. The committee said there was no conclusive evidence that Aduhelm could slow mental decline in people in the early stages of Alzheimer disease and noted that it could cause potentially serious side effects of brain swelling and brain bleeding.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/06/11/americas-poor-pandemic-response/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/06/11/americas-poor-pandemic-response/", "title": "Americas Poor Pandemic Response", "date_published": "2021-06-11T03:21:29-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-06-11T03:21:29-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Ed Yong in The Atlantic:

\n\n

From its founding, the United States has cultivated a national mythos around the capacity of individuals to pull themselves up by their bootstraps, ostensibly by their own merits. This particular strain of individualism, which valorizes independence and prizes personal freedom, transcends administrations. It has also repeatedly hamstrung America’s pandemic response. It explains why the U.S. focused so intensely on preserving its hospital capacity instead of on measures that would have saved people from even needing a hospital. It explains why so many Americans refused to act for the collective good, whether by masking up or isolating themselves. And it explains why the CDC, despite being the nation’s top public-health agency, issued guidelines that focused on the freedoms that vaccinated people might enjoy. The move signaled to people with the newfound privilege of immunity that they were liberated from the pandemic’s collective problem. It also hinted to those who were still vulnerable that their challenges are now theirs alone and, worse still, that their lingering risk was somehow their fault. (“If you’re not vaccinated, that, again, is taking your responsibility for your own health into your own hands,” Walensky said.)

\n\n\n

It should be an embarrassment how we treat the old and the lower and middle class. Hopefully this pandemic cause us as a nation to change for the better.

\n", "content_html": "

Ed Yong in The Atlantic:

\n\n

From its founding, the United States has cultivated a national mythos around the capacity of individuals to pull themselves up by their bootstraps, ostensibly by their own merits. This particular strain of individualism, which valorizes independence and prizes personal freedom, transcends administrations. It has also repeatedly hamstrung America’s pandemic response. It explains why the U.S. focused so intensely on preserving its hospital capacity instead of on measures that would have saved people from even needing a hospital. It explains why so many Americans refused to act for the collective good, whether by masking up or isolating themselves. And it explains why the CDC, despite being the nation’s top public-health agency, issued guidelines that focused on the freedoms that vaccinated people might enjoy. The move signaled to people with the newfound privilege of immunity that they were liberated from the pandemic’s collective problem. It also hinted to those who were still vulnerable that their challenges are now theirs alone and, worse still, that their lingering risk was somehow their fault. (“If you’re not vaccinated, that, again, is taking your responsibility for your own health into your own hands,” Walensky said.)

\n\n\n

It should be an embarrassment how we treat the old and the lower and middle class. Hopefully this pandemic cause us as a nation to change for the better.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/06/07/the-tyranny-of-time/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/06/07/the-tyranny-of-time/", "title": "The Tyranny of Time", "date_published": "2021-06-07T23:18:48-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-06-07T23:18:48-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Contemporary society is obsessed with time — it is the most used noun in the English language. Since clocks with dials and hands first appeared on church towers and town halls, we have been bringing them closer towards us: into our workplaces and schools, our homes, onto our wrists and finally into the phone, laptop and television screens that we stare at for hours each day.

We discipline our lives by the time on the clock. Our working lives and wages are determined by it, and often our “free time” is rigidly managed by it too. Broadly speaking, even our bodily functions are regulated by the clock: We usually eat our meals at appropriate clock times as opposed to whenever we are hungry, go to sleep at appropriate clock times as opposed to whenever we are tired and attribute more significance to the arresting tones of a clock alarm than the apparent rising of the sun at the center of our solar system. The fact that there is a strange shame in eating lunch before noon is a testament to the ways in which we have internalized the logic of the clock. We are “time binding” animals, as the American economist and social theorist Jeremy Rifkin put it in his 1987 book, “Time Wars.” “All of our perceptions of self and world are mediated by the way we imagine, explain, use and implement time.”

\n\n\n

Helpful to remember that no matter how much money we make, how efficient we become time is the great equalizer. We all get 24 hours. Make sure you use them to to better your soul and your relationships.

\n", "content_html": "

Contemporary society is obsessed with time — it is the most used noun in the English language. Since clocks with dials and hands first appeared on church towers and town halls, we have been bringing them closer towards us: into our workplaces and schools, our homes, onto our wrists and finally into the phone, laptop and television screens that we stare at for hours each day.

We discipline our lives by the time on the clock. Our working lives and wages are determined by it, and often our “free time” is rigidly managed by it too. Broadly speaking, even our bodily functions are regulated by the clock: We usually eat our meals at appropriate clock times as opposed to whenever we are hungry, go to sleep at appropriate clock times as opposed to whenever we are tired and attribute more significance to the arresting tones of a clock alarm than the apparent rising of the sun at the center of our solar system. The fact that there is a strange shame in eating lunch before noon is a testament to the ways in which we have internalized the logic of the clock. We are “time binding” animals, as the American economist and social theorist Jeremy Rifkin put it in his 1987 book, “Time Wars.” “All of our perceptions of self and world are mediated by the way we imagine, explain, use and implement time.”

\n\n\n

Helpful to remember that no matter how much money we make, how efficient we become time is the great equalizer. We all get 24 hours. Make sure you use them to to better your soul and your relationships.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/06/07/roadrunner/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/06/07/roadrunner/", "title": "Roadrunner", "date_published": "2021-06-07T20:57:51-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-06-07T20:57:51-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\n\n

Some of you may ask ‘how is this food related?’

\n\n

Truth is, for Anthony Bourdain, food was only an excuse to explore the world and the people in it. And by doing so he showed us how there is greatness in all of us. We just need to sit down and share a meal to notice it.

\n\n

It is unfair he left our world the way he did and when he did. This movie will be a tear jerker from the very beginning.

\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\n\n

Some of you may ask ‘how is this food related?’

\n\n

Truth is, for Anthony Bourdain, food was only an excuse to explore the world and the people in it. And by doing so he showed us how there is greatness in all of us. We just need to sit down and share a meal to notice it.

\n\n

It is unfair he left our world the way he did and when he did. This movie will be a tear jerker from the very beginning.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/06/06/witness/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/06/06/witness/", "title": "Witness", "date_published": "2021-06-06T01:47:21-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-06-06T01:47:21-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

So Karl from Die Hard, Aragorn from LOTR and Han Solo all playing Amish….they don’t make movies like they used to folks.

\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

So Karl from Die Hard, Aragorn from LOTR and Han Solo all playing Amish….they don’t make movies like they used to folks.

\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/06/04/watch-typography/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/06/04/watch-typography/", "title": "Watch Typography", "date_published": "2021-06-04T22:15:46-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-06-04T22:15:46-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

The art of mechanical watches has always fascinated me. Sure, they are yesterday’s technology. A $23 Casio calculator watch will run circles around something like an A. Lange & Söhne Grand Lange 1 watch when it comes to accuracy, functionality, durability and affordability.

\n\n

But what a fine mechanical watch offers is a statement of precision and art. Case in point is the extreme attention to detail placed in the typography of these watches.

\n\n

Good typography should be almost unnoticeable. Blending seamlessly into the rest of the design, it should tell you everything you need to know, without you being aware of it. Despite the many restrictions that are applied to dial layout, the creativity that can be seen in typography across horology is quite staggering. To put it simply, typography is the art and technique of arranging type to make written language legible and appealing when displayed. As the dial is the mvain point of interaction with a watch, it is arguably one of its most important parts, and certainly one that can produce the most emotion. This is why typeface can play such a vital, yet subtle, role in how we experience and feel about a certain piece.

\n\n\n

If the $130,000 price premium of a A. Lange & Söhne Grand Lange 1 is worth it to you - well thats another discussion all altogether.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

The art of mechanical watches has always fascinated me. Sure, they are yesterday’s technology. A $23 Casio calculator watch will run circles around something like an A. Lange & Söhne Grand Lange 1 watch when it comes to accuracy, functionality, durability and affordability.

\n\n

But what a fine mechanical watch offers is a statement of precision and art. Case in point is the extreme attention to detail placed in the typography of these watches.

\n\n

Good typography should be almost unnoticeable. Blending seamlessly into the rest of the design, it should tell you everything you need to know, without you being aware of it. Despite the many restrictions that are applied to dial layout, the creativity that can be seen in typography across horology is quite staggering. To put it simply, typography is the art and technique of arranging type to make written language legible and appealing when displayed. As the dial is the mvain point of interaction with a watch, it is arguably one of its most important parts, and certainly one that can produce the most emotion. This is why typeface can play such a vital, yet subtle, role in how we experience and feel about a certain piece.

\n\n\n

If the $130,000 price premium of a A. Lange & Söhne Grand Lange 1 is worth it to you - well thats another discussion all altogether.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/06/03/footsteps-%7C-a-a-short-documentary/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/06/03/footsteps-%7C-a-a-short-documentary/", "title": "Footsteps | A short documentary", "date_published": "2021-06-03T21:47:04-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-06-03T21:47:04-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\n\n

Foley is like percussion. When it’s really well done you really don’t know it is there. It’s hopefully really transparent.

\n\n


\nA short documentary on Foley artists - the people who create the sound effects for movies and TV shows. Amazing beyond the curtain look at an art form that we all take for granted.

\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\n\n

Foley is like percussion. When it’s really well done you really don’t know it is there. It’s hopefully really transparent.

\n\n


\nA short documentary on Foley artists - the people who create the sound effects for movies and TV shows. Amazing beyond the curtain look at an art form that we all take for granted.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/06/03/researchers-push-to-develop-mrna-vaccines-for-other-diseases/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/06/03/researchers-push-to-develop-mrna-vaccines-for-other-diseases/", "title": "researchers push to develop mRNA vaccines for other diseases", "date_published": "2021-06-03T00:39:39-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-06-03T00:39:39-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Now that it’s proven itself against Covid-19, mRNA technology will be used to develop improved vaccines for influenza and new vaccines for HIV, hepatitis C, malaria, and tuberculosis. And they will be developed at unprecedented speed and efficiency.

\n\n

With traditional methods of making a vaccine against influenza, developers must modify the virus or protein being made. That modification can require changes in manufacturing. For example, the modified virus might grow a little differently than expected, which might require changes in a vaccine’s formulation. Plus, vendors usually start making vaccines against influenza six months in advance of using them, so by the time people get the vaccines, they might not provide protection against the most prominent influenza strains of the season.

With an mRNA-based approach, Dormitzer says, “swapping one gene for another with mRNA changes its properties very little in manufacturing, which is much easier than changing a viral strain.” Speed also matters, and developers can quickly make mRNA vaccines. “The closer you can move the strain selection to flu season, the more accurate you will be,” Dormitzer says. By being able to make mRNA vaccines faster, manufacturers can select the influenza strains to target later than they are able to with traditional methods, which should increase the efficacy of the treatment.

The engineering behind mRNA vaccines also allows scientists to build multi-valent vaccines. “We can go up in the number of antigens being expressed,” Dormitzer explains, “which could increase the robustness of a flu vaccine.”

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Now that it’s proven itself against Covid-19, mRNA technology will be used to develop improved vaccines for influenza and new vaccines for HIV, hepatitis C, malaria, and tuberculosis. And they will be developed at unprecedented speed and efficiency.

\n\n

With traditional methods of making a vaccine against influenza, developers must modify the virus or protein being made. That modification can require changes in manufacturing. For example, the modified virus might grow a little differently than expected, which might require changes in a vaccine’s formulation. Plus, vendors usually start making vaccines against influenza six months in advance of using them, so by the time people get the vaccines, they might not provide protection against the most prominent influenza strains of the season.

With an mRNA-based approach, Dormitzer says, “swapping one gene for another with mRNA changes its properties very little in manufacturing, which is much easier than changing a viral strain.” Speed also matters, and developers can quickly make mRNA vaccines. “The closer you can move the strain selection to flu season, the more accurate you will be,” Dormitzer says. By being able to make mRNA vaccines faster, manufacturers can select the influenza strains to target later than they are able to with traditional methods, which should increase the efficacy of the treatment.

The engineering behind mRNA vaccines also allows scientists to build multi-valent vaccines. “We can go up in the number of antigens being expressed,” Dormitzer explains, “which could increase the robustness of a flu vaccine.”

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/06/01/The-Day-Prince-Guitar-Wept-the-Loudest/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/06/01/The-Day-Prince-Guitar-Wept-the-Loudest/", "title": "The Day Prince’s Guitar Wept the Loudest", "date_published": "2021-06-01T13:21:26-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-06-01T13:21:26-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\nAt the 2004 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony for George Harrison - Harrison’s son Dhani, music legends Tom Petty, Jeff Lynne, and Steve Winwood, and Prince perform While My Guitar Gently Weeps. At about 3 minutes and 30 seconds in, Prince absolutely rips the place apart with a 3-minute guitar solo for the ages.

\n\n

Tom sort of went over to him and said, “Just cut loose and don’t feel sort of inhibited to copy anything that we have, just play your thing, just have a good time.” It was a hell of a guitar solo, and a hell of a show he actually put on for the band. When he fell back into the audience, everybody in the band freaked out, like, “Oh my God, he’s falling off the stage!” And then that whole thing with the guitar going up in the air. I didn’t even see who caught it. I just saw it go up, and I was astonished that it didn’t come back down again. Everybody wonders where that guitar went, and I gotta tell you, I was on the stage, and I wonder where it went, too.

\n\n\n

One of the musical greats - and a truly underrated guitar player. He left us way to early.

\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\nAt the 2004 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony for George Harrison - Harrison’s son Dhani, music legends Tom Petty, Jeff Lynne, and Steve Winwood, and Prince perform While My Guitar Gently Weeps. At about 3 minutes and 30 seconds in, Prince absolutely rips the place apart with a 3-minute guitar solo for the ages.

\n\n

Tom sort of went over to him and said, “Just cut loose and don’t feel sort of inhibited to copy anything that we have, just play your thing, just have a good time.” It was a hell of a guitar solo, and a hell of a show he actually put on for the band. When he fell back into the audience, everybody in the band freaked out, like, “Oh my God, he’s falling off the stage!” And then that whole thing with the guitar going up in the air. I didn’t even see who caught it. I just saw it go up, and I was astonished that it didn’t come back down again. Everybody wonders where that guitar went, and I gotta tell you, I was on the stage, and I wonder where it went, too.

\n\n\n

One of the musical greats - and a truly underrated guitar player. He left us way to early.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/05/31/the-amazon-flywheel/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/05/31/the-amazon-flywheel/", "title": "The Amazon 'flywheel'", "date_published": "2021-05-31T16:45:54-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-05-31T16:45:54-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

The oldest anti competitive tactic - use your advantage in part of the market to crowd out and marginalize your competitors. Look I like Amazon as much as the next person - but they really need to be reigned in. Mat Stoller as an excellent writeup:

\n\n

To understand why, we have to start with the idea of free shipping. Free shipping is the God of online retail, so powerful that France actually banned the practice to protect its retail outlets. Free shipping is also the backbone of Prime. Amazon founder Jeff Bezos knew that the number one pain point for online buyers is shipping - one third of shoppers abandon their carts when they see shipping charges. Bezos helped invent Prime for this reason, saying the point of Prime was to use free shipping “to draw a moat around our best customers.” The goal was to get people used to buying from Amazon, knowing they wouldn’t have to worry about shipping charges. Once Amazon had control of a large chunk of online retail customers, it could then begin dictating terms of sellers who needed to reach them.

This became clear as you read Racine’s complaint. One of the most important sentences in the AG’s argument is a quote from Bezos in 2015 where he alludes to this point. In discussing the firm’s logistics service that is the bedrock of its free shipping promise, Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA), he said, “FBA is so important because it is glue that inextricably links Marketplace and Prime. Thanks to FBA, Marketplace and Prime are no longer two things. Their economics … are now happily and deeply intertwined.” Amazon wants people to see Prime, FBA, and Marketplace as one integrated mega-product, what Bezos likes to call “a flywheel”, to disguise the actual monopolization at work. (Indeed, any time you hear the word “flywheel” relating to Amazon, replace it with “monopoly” and the sentence will make sense.)

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

The oldest anti competitive tactic - use your advantage in part of the market to crowd out and marginalize your competitors. Look I like Amazon as much as the next person - but they really need to be reigned in. Mat Stoller as an excellent writeup:

\n\n

To understand why, we have to start with the idea of free shipping. Free shipping is the God of online retail, so powerful that France actually banned the practice to protect its retail outlets. Free shipping is also the backbone of Prime. Amazon founder Jeff Bezos knew that the number one pain point for online buyers is shipping - one third of shoppers abandon their carts when they see shipping charges. Bezos helped invent Prime for this reason, saying the point of Prime was to use free shipping “to draw a moat around our best customers.” The goal was to get people used to buying from Amazon, knowing they wouldn’t have to worry about shipping charges. Once Amazon had control of a large chunk of online retail customers, it could then begin dictating terms of sellers who needed to reach them.

This became clear as you read Racine’s complaint. One of the most important sentences in the AG’s argument is a quote from Bezos in 2015 where he alludes to this point. In discussing the firm’s logistics service that is the bedrock of its free shipping promise, Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA), he said, “FBA is so important because it is glue that inextricably links Marketplace and Prime. Thanks to FBA, Marketplace and Prime are no longer two things. Their economics … are now happily and deeply intertwined.” Amazon wants people to see Prime, FBA, and Marketplace as one integrated mega-product, what Bezos likes to call “a flywheel”, to disguise the actual monopolization at work. (Indeed, any time you hear the word “flywheel” relating to Amazon, replace it with “monopoly” and the sentence will make sense.)

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/05/28/g-dot-e-smith-one-of-the-real-cats/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/05/28/g-dot-e-smith-one-of-the-real-cats/", "title": "G.E Smith - one of the real cats", "date_published": "2021-05-28T22:20:14-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-05-28T22:20:14-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\nG.E. Smith on Dylan, SNL, Clapton, Van Halen and and his time with SNL.

\n\n

He claims to not be that talented. Well I call BS -G.E. Smith is the real deal. One of the real cats.

\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\nG.E. Smith on Dylan, SNL, Clapton, Van Halen and and his time with SNL.

\n\n

He claims to not be that talented. Well I call BS -G.E. Smith is the real deal. One of the real cats.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/05/28/what-does-u-dot-s-health-care-look-like-abroad/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/05/28/what-does-u-dot-s-health-care-look-like-abroad/", "title": "What Does U.S. Health Care Look Like Abroad?", "date_published": "2021-05-28T02:03:43-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-05-28T02:03:43-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\n\n

To know that I can get sick, I can get injured but I will still be able to get taken care of - that is freedom. This is not freedom.

\n\n\n

On U.S Elections:

\n\n
\n\n\n


\nOn America’s response to climate change:

\n\n
\n\n\n


\nThe American Dream is dying. Our country is quickly turning into a third world country. The really sad part is that it isn’t the government, corporations or hoards of immigrants at boarders - it’s the ignorance and irrational fear of government by the citizenry.

\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\n\n

To know that I can get sick, I can get injured but I will still be able to get taken care of - that is freedom. This is not freedom.

\n\n\n

On U.S Elections:

\n\n
\n\n\n


\nOn America’s response to climate change:

\n\n
\n\n\n


\nThe American Dream is dying. Our country is quickly turning into a third world country. The really sad part is that it isn’t the government, corporations or hoards of immigrants at boarders - it’s the ignorance and irrational fear of government by the citizenry.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/05/26/the-end-is-near/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/05/26/the-end-is-near/", "title": "The End is Near", "date_published": "2021-05-26T01:54:58-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-05-26T01:54:58-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

The end is near. Normally, that sentence does not portend anything good. Then the times we live in are not normal.

\n\n

Every interaction is both precious and an opportunity to delight. %}
Herd immunity is not a moment in time. President Biden is never going to say: “Today, at 9:04 A.M., on the deck of the U.S.S. Moderna, the virus known as SARS-CoV-2 signed our general terms of surrender.”

Instead, this virus is slowly becoming endemic: something we live with.

We will probably have bad seasons and good seasons, as we do with flu. We may have annual shots with a blend of the South African, Brazilian, Indian or whatever variants are circling the globe that year. Luckily, because coronaviruses mutate more slowly than influenza viruses, they will probably be better matches than flu shots are.

\n\n\n

\n", "content_html": "

The end is near. Normally, that sentence does not portend anything good. Then the times we live in are not normal.

\n\n

Every interaction is both precious and an opportunity to delight. %}
Herd immunity is not a moment in time. President Biden is never going to say: “Today, at 9:04 A.M., on the deck of the U.S.S. Moderna, the virus known as SARS-CoV-2 signed our general terms of surrender.”

Instead, this virus is slowly becoming endemic: something we live with.

We will probably have bad seasons and good seasons, as we do with flu. We may have annual shots with a blend of the South African, Brazilian, Indian or whatever variants are circling the globe that year. Luckily, because coronaviruses mutate more slowly than influenza viruses, they will probably be better matches than flu shots are.

\n\n\n

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/05/26/1000-musicians-play-rock-songs/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/05/26/1000-musicians-play-rock-songs/", "title": "1000 Musicians Play Rock Songs", "date_published": "2021-05-26T01:09:35-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-05-26T01:09:35-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

I came across Rockin'1000 full concert at Stade de France of 1000+ musicians playing rock classics from past and present. Rock music was ment to be a communal experience. Just you and 20,000 thousands of your best mates head banging and reveling in the sonic chaos. Hundreds of drums, guitars, bass and singers in sync. Musicians from all walks of life - no politics, no religion, no race or color, no nationality, no gender, no age difference, no national boundaries, just pure music where everyone is beautiful.

\n\n

Be excellent to each other and rock on!

\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

I came across Rockin'1000 full concert at Stade de France of 1000+ musicians playing rock classics from past and present. Rock music was ment to be a communal experience. Just you and 20,000 thousands of your best mates head banging and reveling in the sonic chaos. Hundreds of drums, guitars, bass and singers in sync. Musicians from all walks of life - no politics, no religion, no race or color, no nationality, no gender, no age difference, no national boundaries, just pure music where everyone is beautiful.

\n\n

Be excellent to each other and rock on!

\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/05/24/the-great-wave-off-kanagawa/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/05/24/the-great-wave-off-kanagawa/", "title": "The Great Wave Of Kanagawa", "date_published": "2021-05-24T22:54:21-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-05-24T22:54:21-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

For all you Seiko watch fans - ever wonder what that wave in the back of your watch is? Host James Payne has a great series in which one the videos explaining it:

\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

For all you Seiko watch fans - ever wonder what that wave in the back of your watch is? Host James Payne has a great series in which one the videos explaining it:

\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/05/24/new-remote/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/05/24/new-remote/", "title": "New Remote", "date_published": "2021-05-24T21:59:06-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-05-24T21:59:06-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

I have been an Apple TV user for the last 7 years. And I absolutely love the little black box. However, I hate the remote. For a company that consistently designs fantastic UI and physical products - the black Siri apple remote is a horrendous design. Just use it for a few minutes and its obvious whats wrong with it:

\n\n\n\n\n

You have to wonder how it ever made it out of the prototype stage like this. The new aluminum Siri remote fixes every single one of these problems. Just look at it:

\n\n

\n\n

This alone justifies upgrading to the new 5th generation Apple TV. You have to wonder what the hell took six years to fix this mess.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

I have been an Apple TV user for the last 7 years. And I absolutely love the little black box. However, I hate the remote. For a company that consistently designs fantastic UI and physical products - the black Siri apple remote is a horrendous design. Just use it for a few minutes and its obvious whats wrong with it:

\n\n\n\n\n

You have to wonder how it ever made it out of the prototype stage like this. The new aluminum Siri remote fixes every single one of these problems. Just look at it:

\n\n

\n\n

This alone justifies upgrading to the new 5th generation Apple TV. You have to wonder what the hell took six years to fix this mess.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/05/20/the-apple-silicon-era/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/05/20/the-apple-silicon-era/", "title": "The Apple Silicon Era", "date_published": "2021-05-20T23:49:30-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-05-20T23:49:30-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

But then a funny thing happened.

[..]

With the new M1 iPad Pros, Apple has achieved equilibrium. It’s literally the exact same chip. The iPad Pro has the speed of the Mac and the Mac has the incredible power efficiency and thermals of the iPad Pro. I saw this coming years ago, yet it’s still hard for me to believe.

\n\n\n

Believe it. Apple is about to do to the CPU industry what it did to cell phone industry. The upcoming M2 chips will be the nail in the coffin for x86 dominance.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

But then a funny thing happened.

[..]

With the new M1 iPad Pros, Apple has achieved equilibrium. It’s literally the exact same chip. The iPad Pro has the speed of the Mac and the Mac has the incredible power efficiency and thermals of the iPad Pro. I saw this coming years ago, yet it’s still hard for me to believe.

\n\n\n

Believe it. Apple is about to do to the CPU industry what it did to cell phone industry. The upcoming M2 chips will be the nail in the coffin for x86 dominance.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/05/20/private-vs-public-affluence/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/05/20/private-vs-public-affluence/", "title": "Private vs Public affluence", "date_published": "2021-05-20T23:29:34-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-05-20T23:29:34-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

There is a cost to our hyper capitalist society. One where the culture of greed and private ownership is an assault on community and our environment. Jeremy Williams in his excellent post:

\n\n

But the thing I wanted to highlight is the difference between private and public affluence. Private affluence is individuals gaining things for themselves – possessions, nice homes and experiences, trampolines. Public affluence is money spent lavishly on things that are shared – libraries, parks, buses, playgrounds.

Capitalism pushes us towards private affluence. We aspire to acquire our own things. Shared things are seen as second best, something of an inconvenience. Politics responds accordingly, prioritising economic growth and ‘more money in your pocket’, rather than shared goods and services. So everyone has their own lawnmower while the grass grows long in the park. People get their own exercise bikes or rowing machines, and the gym at the local leisure centre starts to look tired and under-funded. The wealthy pay for childcare or hire a nanny, but the early years nursery closes down.

Having access to your own things looks like progress, but there is a cost. Community is one of the victims. Shared spaces are places where community happens, where people mix and meet. Nobody makes new friends on their own rowing machine, in front of the TV. Inequality is another. Those who can afford their own won’t notice, but those on lower incomes rely much more on shared resources. When a library closes, it’s those on the margins of society who lose access to books, internet access, or a warm place to sit and do their homework. There is also an environmental cost, as private ownership means endlessly duplicated goods, many underused objects across many owners rather than a few well used objects that are shared.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

There is a cost to our hyper capitalist society. One where the culture of greed and private ownership is an assault on community and our environment. Jeremy Williams in his excellent post:

\n\n

But the thing I wanted to highlight is the difference between private and public affluence. Private affluence is individuals gaining things for themselves – possessions, nice homes and experiences, trampolines. Public affluence is money spent lavishly on things that are shared – libraries, parks, buses, playgrounds.

Capitalism pushes us towards private affluence. We aspire to acquire our own things. Shared things are seen as second best, something of an inconvenience. Politics responds accordingly, prioritising economic growth and ‘more money in your pocket’, rather than shared goods and services. So everyone has their own lawnmower while the grass grows long in the park. People get their own exercise bikes or rowing machines, and the gym at the local leisure centre starts to look tired and under-funded. The wealthy pay for childcare or hire a nanny, but the early years nursery closes down.

Having access to your own things looks like progress, but there is a cost. Community is one of the victims. Shared spaces are places where community happens, where people mix and meet. Nobody makes new friends on their own rowing machine, in front of the TV. Inequality is another. Those who can afford their own won’t notice, but those on lower incomes rely much more on shared resources. When a library closes, it’s those on the margins of society who lose access to books, internet access, or a warm place to sit and do their homework. There is also an environmental cost, as private ownership means endlessly duplicated goods, many underused objects across many owners rather than a few well used objects that are shared.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/05/17/we-need-to-keep-wearing-masks/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/05/17/we-need-to-keep-wearing-masks/", "title": "We need to keep wearing masks", "date_published": "2021-05-17T03:48:10-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-05-17T03:48:10-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

I have to say - I am not happy about the CDC’s decision to state that fully vaccinated people don’t need to wear masks in most situations indoors or out. In the US 600 people/day are still dying of Covid-19 and our case positivity rate is still above 3% - not to mention most children are still not vaccinated.

\n\n

Holding off for a few more weeks could have improved things tremendously. The CDC’s decision to lift the mandates seems to be guided by economics rather than science. Zeynep Tufekci’s piece in New York Times

\n\n

It’s difficult for officials to issue rules as conditions evolve and uncertainty continues. So I hesitate to question the agency’s approach. But it’s not clear whether it was responding to scientific evidence or public clamor to lift state and local mandates, which the C.D.C. said could remain in place.

It might have been better to have kept up indoor mask mandates to help suppress the virus for maybe as little as a few more weeks.

The C.D.C. could have set metrics to measure such progress, saying that guidelines would be maintained until the number of cases or the number vaccinations reached a certain level, determined by epidemiologists.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

I have to say - I am not happy about the CDC’s decision to state that fully vaccinated people don’t need to wear masks in most situations indoors or out. In the US 600 people/day are still dying of Covid-19 and our case positivity rate is still above 3% - not to mention most children are still not vaccinated.

\n\n

Holding off for a few more weeks could have improved things tremendously. The CDC’s decision to lift the mandates seems to be guided by economics rather than science. Zeynep Tufekci’s piece in New York Times

\n\n

It’s difficult for officials to issue rules as conditions evolve and uncertainty continues. So I hesitate to question the agency’s approach. But it’s not clear whether it was responding to scientific evidence or public clamor to lift state and local mandates, which the C.D.C. said could remain in place.

It might have been better to have kept up indoor mask mandates to help suppress the virus for maybe as little as a few more weeks.

The C.D.C. could have set metrics to measure such progress, saying that guidelines would be maintained until the number of cases or the number vaccinations reached a certain level, determined by epidemiologists.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/05/15/cyber-ninjas-bamboo-and-chinese-oh-my/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/05/15/cyber-ninjas-bamboo-and-chinese-oh-my/", "title": "Cyber Ninjas, Bamboo and Chinese! Oh My!", "date_published": "2021-05-15T05:06:56-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-05-15T05:06:56-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

You just can’t make this stuff up. But Jordan Klepper is on it…

\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

You just can’t make this stuff up. But Jordan Klepper is on it…

\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/05/13/cult-of-ignorance/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/05/13/cult-of-ignorance/", "title": "A Cult of Ignorance", "date_published": "2021-05-13T04:32:09-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-05-13T04:32:09-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there always has been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through out political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that \"democracy means that my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.\"

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

There is a cult of ignorance in the United States, and there always has been. The strain of anti-intellectualism has been a constant thread winding its way through out political and cultural life, nurtured by the false notion that \"democracy means that my ignorance is just as good as your knowledge.\"

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/05/12/us-quarters-to-honor-women/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/05/12/us-quarters-to-honor-women/", "title": "US Quarters to honor Women", "date_published": "2021-05-12T00:48:58-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-05-12T00:48:58-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Starting in 2022, the US Mint will release into circulation quarters featuring notable American women as part of the American Women Quarters Program.

\n\n

The American Women Quarters may feature contributions from a variety of fields, including, but not limited to, suffrage, civil rights, abolition, government, humanities, science, space, and the arts. The women honored will be from ethnically, racially, and geographically diverse backgrounds. The Public Law requires that no living person be featured in the coin designs.

\n\n\n

The first two quarters to be released honor astronaut Sally Ride and writer Maya Angelou.\n

\n\n

\n", "content_html": "

Starting in 2022, the US Mint will release into circulation quarters featuring notable American women as part of the American Women Quarters Program.

\n\n

The American Women Quarters may feature contributions from a variety of fields, including, but not limited to, suffrage, civil rights, abolition, government, humanities, science, space, and the arts. The women honored will be from ethnically, racially, and geographically diverse backgrounds. The Public Law requires that no living person be featured in the coin designs.

\n\n\n

The first two quarters to be released honor astronaut Sally Ride and writer Maya Angelou.\n

\n\n

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/05/11/dune/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/05/11/dune/", "title": "Dune", "date_published": "2021-05-11T01:27:14-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-05-11T01:27:14-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Dune is one of, if not the, greatest science fiction epic ever put to print. It’s influence, even today some 50 years later, is far and wide. Hard to imagine Star Wars would have ever existed with out Frank Herbert’s masterpiece. Hari Kunzru has an excellent write up in The Guardian:

\n\n

Every fantasy reflects the place and time that produced it. If The Lord of the Rings is about the rise of fascism and the trauma of the second world war, and Game of Thrones, with its cynical realpolitik and cast of precarious, entrepreneurial characters is a fairytale of neoliberalism, then Dune is the paradigmatic fantasy of the Age of Aquarius. Its concerns – environmental stress, human potential, altered states of consciousness and the developing countries’ revolution against imperialism – are blended together into an era-defining vision of personal and cosmic transformation.

\n\n

[..]

\n\n

Actually, the great Dune film did get made. Its name is Star Wars. In early drafts, this story of a desert planet, an evil emperor, and a boy with a galactic destiny also included warring noble houses and a princess guarding a shipment of something called “aura spice”. All manner of borrowings from Dune litter the Star Wars universe, from the Bene Gesserit-like mental powers of the Jedi to the mining and “moisture farming” on Tattooine. Herbert knew he’d been ripped off, and thought he saw the ideas of other SF writers in Lucas’s money-spinning franchise. He and a number of colleagues formed a joke organisation called the We’re Too Big to Sue George Lucas Society.

\n\n

They did make a Dune movie staring Sting in 1984 - avoid it at all costs. Wait for this to come out sometime this year:

\n\n
\n\n\n


\nThis trailer exceeded my expectations. I am so hyped to see this in theaters.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Dune is one of, if not the, greatest science fiction epic ever put to print. It’s influence, even today some 50 years later, is far and wide. Hard to imagine Star Wars would have ever existed with out Frank Herbert’s masterpiece. Hari Kunzru has an excellent write up in The Guardian:

\n\n

Every fantasy reflects the place and time that produced it. If The Lord of the Rings is about the rise of fascism and the trauma of the second world war, and Game of Thrones, with its cynical realpolitik and cast of precarious, entrepreneurial characters is a fairytale of neoliberalism, then Dune is the paradigmatic fantasy of the Age of Aquarius. Its concerns – environmental stress, human potential, altered states of consciousness and the developing countries’ revolution against imperialism – are blended together into an era-defining vision of personal and cosmic transformation.

\n\n

[..]

\n\n

Actually, the great Dune film did get made. Its name is Star Wars. In early drafts, this story of a desert planet, an evil emperor, and a boy with a galactic destiny also included warring noble houses and a princess guarding a shipment of something called “aura spice”. All manner of borrowings from Dune litter the Star Wars universe, from the Bene Gesserit-like mental powers of the Jedi to the mining and “moisture farming” on Tattooine. Herbert knew he’d been ripped off, and thought he saw the ideas of other SF writers in Lucas’s money-spinning franchise. He and a number of colleagues formed a joke organisation called the We’re Too Big to Sue George Lucas Society.

\n\n

They did make a Dune movie staring Sting in 1984 - avoid it at all costs. Wait for this to come out sometime this year:

\n\n
\n\n\n


\nThis trailer exceeded my expectations. I am so hyped to see this in theaters.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/05/10/world-building-in-128-bytes/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/05/10/world-building-in-128-bytes/", "title": "World building in 128 bytes", "date_published": "2021-05-10T23:05:00-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-05-10T23:05:00-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Pitfall was one of the most sophisticated games released for the Atari 2600. While it may seem a simplistic game in 2021 - in 1983 on a machine with 128 bytes of RAM and 4096 bytes of ROM - it was an amazing feat of engineering. Just how was David Crane able to do it in such a constrained environment?

\n\n

The way you make a large world without storing much data is by having some code generate it for you.

The biggest problem with this, however, is that you generally need to save the data you generated. This is what games such as Rogue and Minecraft do. They randomly generate worlds in order to give variety to players, but save the data once it's generated. The limitations of the Atari do not afford this luxury.

Crane overcame this in two ways. The first was in the way he represented a room's layout in memory, and the second was the way in which he generated those representations. The way these representations are generated actually obviate the need to store anything but the current room in memory, but we'll get to that later. First we will look at how the current room is represented.

[...]

Crane used a single byte to represent the layout of the current room. That may seem incredible given all that's going on in any given room, but it's actually quite simple.

\n\n\n

A single byte of memory. Read the details here.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Pitfall was one of the most sophisticated games released for the Atari 2600. While it may seem a simplistic game in 2021 - in 1983 on a machine with 128 bytes of RAM and 4096 bytes of ROM - it was an amazing feat of engineering. Just how was David Crane able to do it in such a constrained environment?

\n\n

The way you make a large world without storing much data is by having some code generate it for you.

The biggest problem with this, however, is that you generally need to save the data you generated. This is what games such as Rogue and Minecraft do. They randomly generate worlds in order to give variety to players, but save the data once it's generated. The limitations of the Atari do not afford this luxury.

Crane overcame this in two ways. The first was in the way he represented a room's layout in memory, and the second was the way in which he generated those representations. The way these representations are generated actually obviate the need to store anything but the current room in memory, but we'll get to that later. First we will look at how the current room is represented.

[...]

Crane used a single byte to represent the layout of the current room. That may seem incredible given all that's going on in any given room, but it's actually quite simple.

\n\n\n

A single byte of memory. Read the details here.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/05/10/half-renovated-houses/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/05/10/half-renovated-houses/", "title": "Half renovated houses", "date_published": "2021-05-10T22:47:59-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-05-10T22:47:59-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

When the once burgeoning coal industry in Ruhrgebiet, Germany, began to decline, many of the workers’ apartments were sold off. Oftentimes, new owners only purchased half of the building—miners maintained a lifelong right of residence to their quarters—creating a stark split between the left and right sides of the structure. Photographer Wolfgang Fröhling captures this visually striking divide in a series of images framing the renovated and original designs juxtaposed in a single structure. See the full collection of half-painted facades and disparate landscaping on Pixel Project, and find more of the Bottrop-based photographer’s work on his site.

\n\n\n

I see this as a commentary on economic inequality.

\n\n

\n\n

\n\n

\n", "content_html": "

When the once burgeoning coal industry in Ruhrgebiet, Germany, began to decline, many of the workers’ apartments were sold off. Oftentimes, new owners only purchased half of the building—miners maintained a lifelong right of residence to their quarters—creating a stark split between the left and right sides of the structure. Photographer Wolfgang Fröhling captures this visually striking divide in a series of images framing the renovated and original designs juxtaposed in a single structure. See the full collection of half-painted facades and disparate landscaping on Pixel Project, and find more of the Bottrop-based photographer’s work on his site.

\n\n\n

I see this as a commentary on economic inequality.

\n\n

\n\n

\n\n

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/05/10/a-view-from-above/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/05/10/a-view-from-above/", "title": "A View From Above", "date_published": "2021-05-10T22:36:26-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-05-10T22:36:26-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Photographer Brad Walls provides a new angle on the actions of athletes.

\n\n

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\n\n

\n\n

\n", "content_html": "

Photographer Brad Walls provides a new angle on the actions of athletes.

\n\n

\n\n

\n\n

\n\n

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/05/09/what-color-are-these-spheres/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/05/09/what-color-are-these-spheres/", "title": "What color are these spheres?", "date_published": "2021-05-09T02:48:53-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-05-09T02:48:53-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

A color contrast optical illusion makes it look like the balls are different colors. In reality they are all the same color and shading.

\n\n

\n\n

In a nutshell, we do perceive colors as they stand on their own, but also by contrast with colors around them. If I put up an image of a red square, then (assuming you have normal color vision) it looks red. But if I put up objects with other colors around it, the color we perceive changes a bit. That can be manipulated using stripes of different colors, for example. In the top row, note the colors of the stripes going across the balls. The left one has green stripes, the middle one red, and the right one blue. That changes how we see the balls.

This is called the Munker-White illusion (or sometimes just the Munker illusion), and it’s a powerful one. When you’re not looking directly at the balls, the color of the stripes pulls the color of the ball toward it, in a manner of speaking, so the green stripes make the ball look greener. It’s weird.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

A color contrast optical illusion makes it look like the balls are different colors. In reality they are all the same color and shading.

\n\n

\n\n

In a nutshell, we do perceive colors as they stand on their own, but also by contrast with colors around them. If I put up an image of a red square, then (assuming you have normal color vision) it looks red. But if I put up objects with other colors around it, the color we perceive changes a bit. That can be manipulated using stripes of different colors, for example. In the top row, note the colors of the stripes going across the balls. The left one has green stripes, the middle one red, and the right one blue. That changes how we see the balls.

This is called the Munker-White illusion (or sometimes just the Munker illusion), and it’s a powerful one. When you’re not looking directly at the balls, the color of the stripes pulls the color of the ball toward it, in a manner of speaking, so the green stripes make the ball look greener. It’s weird.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/05/08/sexual-violence-of-game-of-thrones/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/05/08/sexual-violence-of-game-of-thrones/", "title": "Sexual Violence of Game of Thrones", "date_published": "2021-05-08T22:03:20-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-05-08T22:03:20-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Game of Thrones was on of my favorite show on TV. At least until the Season 8 finally when D&D completely screwed over the audience- but I digress. What really bugged me about the show was the amount of rape, nudity and degradation of women on a weekly basis. Every season trying to top the last one.

\n\n

Sophie Gilbert writing for The Atlantic:

\n\n

Game of Thrones, which debuted 10 years ago this spring, has the dubious honor of being the ne plus ultra of rape culture on television. No series before, or since, has so flagrantly served up rape and assault simply for kicks, without a shadow of a nod toward “realism” (because dragons). The genre is fantasy, and the fantasy at hand is a world in which every woman, no matter her power or fortune, is likely to be violated in front of our eyes. Rape is like blood on Game of Thrones, so commonplace that viewers become inured to it, necessitating ever more excess to grab our attention. It’s brutal, graphic, and hollow. It’s also intentional. Daenerys’s wedding night isn’t explicitly written as being nonconsensual in George R. R. Martin’s 1996 novel (despite the fact that the character was 13 at the time), and it wasn’t filmed as such in the first, unreleased Game of Thrones pilot. At some point, the decision was made to introduce viewers to the series’s most significant female character via her humiliating assault—with pornified aesthetics for added titillation—by a man who had purchased her.

When Thrones was on the air, each season brought with it ample discussion of its wearying reliance on rape for dramatic fodder. My colleague Chris Orr did a character-by-character breakdown in 2015 of the exaggerated and invented instances of sexualized violence that the show’s creators, David Benioff and D. B. Weiss, introduced in adapting the show; in response to widespread criticism, Weiss and Benioff eventually toned down depictions of rape and assault and sacrificed neither viewership nor Holy shit watercooler moments in the process, proving the show never needed them in the first place.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Game of Thrones was on of my favorite show on TV. At least until the Season 8 finally when D&D completely screwed over the audience- but I digress. What really bugged me about the show was the amount of rape, nudity and degradation of women on a weekly basis. Every season trying to top the last one.

\n\n

Sophie Gilbert writing for The Atlantic:

\n\n

Game of Thrones, which debuted 10 years ago this spring, has the dubious honor of being the ne plus ultra of rape culture on television. No series before, or since, has so flagrantly served up rape and assault simply for kicks, without a shadow of a nod toward “realism” (because dragons). The genre is fantasy, and the fantasy at hand is a world in which every woman, no matter her power or fortune, is likely to be violated in front of our eyes. Rape is like blood on Game of Thrones, so commonplace that viewers become inured to it, necessitating ever more excess to grab our attention. It’s brutal, graphic, and hollow. It’s also intentional. Daenerys’s wedding night isn’t explicitly written as being nonconsensual in George R. R. Martin’s 1996 novel (despite the fact that the character was 13 at the time), and it wasn’t filmed as such in the first, unreleased Game of Thrones pilot. At some point, the decision was made to introduce viewers to the series’s most significant female character via her humiliating assault—with pornified aesthetics for added titillation—by a man who had purchased her.

When Thrones was on the air, each season brought with it ample discussion of its wearying reliance on rape for dramatic fodder. My colleague Chris Orr did a character-by-character breakdown in 2015 of the exaggerated and invented instances of sexualized violence that the show’s creators, David Benioff and D. B. Weiss, introduced in adapting the show; in response to widespread criticism, Weiss and Benioff eventually toned down depictions of rape and assault and sacrificed neither viewership nor Holy shit watercooler moments in the process, proving the show never needed them in the first place.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/04/27/the-labor-shortage/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/04/27/the-labor-shortage/", "title": "The Labor Shortage", "date_published": "2021-04-27T00:46:30-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-04-27T00:46:30-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

In the media, their is a growing voice that the Covid-19 benefits are causing workers to be lazy. That is certainly one view - but Anne Helen Petersen makes a great point:

\n\n

Refusing to prostrate yourself on the wheel of work is not a failure. Nor is it self-care — at least not in the narrow, individualistic way we conceive of it. It can be a means of advocating for yourself, but also your peers, your family, even your children. But here’s the thing about a reshuffle: you’re still playing with the same deck of cards, and the game of American capitalism is still rigged against the worker. Which is why business models in everything from tourism to early childhood care need to be fundamentally reconceived — and built in a way that doesn’t hinge on workers making poverty-level wages.

We should ask ourselves, our communities, and our government: if a business can’t pay a living wage, should it be a business? If it’s too expensive for businesses to provide healthcare for their workers, maybe we need to decouple it from employment? If childcare is a market failure, but we need childcare for the economy to work, how can the government build that infrastructure? If the pay you provide workers doesn’t allow them to live in the community, what needs to change? Collectively, we should be thinking of different funding models, different ownership scenarios, and different growth imperatives. Failure to do so is simply resigning ourselves to another round of this rigged game.

\n\n\n

If you can’t find a way to pay your employees a living wage and provide them a dignified work environment - why should you be allowed to exist as a business? This perverse attitude in America of profits over Americans needs to be stop. And the only way that is going to happen is by the citizenry demanding laws that enforce those changes.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

In the media, their is a growing voice that the Covid-19 benefits are causing workers to be lazy. That is certainly one view - but Anne Helen Petersen makes a great point:

\n\n

Refusing to prostrate yourself on the wheel of work is not a failure. Nor is it self-care — at least not in the narrow, individualistic way we conceive of it. It can be a means of advocating for yourself, but also your peers, your family, even your children. But here’s the thing about a reshuffle: you’re still playing with the same deck of cards, and the game of American capitalism is still rigged against the worker. Which is why business models in everything from tourism to early childhood care need to be fundamentally reconceived — and built in a way that doesn’t hinge on workers making poverty-level wages.

We should ask ourselves, our communities, and our government: if a business can’t pay a living wage, should it be a business? If it’s too expensive for businesses to provide healthcare for their workers, maybe we need to decouple it from employment? If childcare is a market failure, but we need childcare for the economy to work, how can the government build that infrastructure? If the pay you provide workers doesn’t allow them to live in the community, what needs to change? Collectively, we should be thinking of different funding models, different ownership scenarios, and different growth imperatives. Failure to do so is simply resigning ourselves to another round of this rigged game.

\n\n\n

If you can’t find a way to pay your employees a living wage and provide them a dignified work environment - why should you be allowed to exist as a business? This perverse attitude in America of profits over Americans needs to be stop. And the only way that is going to happen is by the citizenry demanding laws that enforce those changes.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/04/26/and-the-winner-is-dot-dot-dot/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/04/26/and-the-winner-is-dot-dot-dot/", "title": "And the winner is ...", "date_published": "2021-04-26T13:34:30-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-04-26T13:34:30-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\nFrom The Economist:

\n\n

The bigger challenge may be persuading viewers to tune in from home. If other awards shows are a portent, the Oscars are in for a difficult night. Last month the Grammy music awards got just 9.3m viewers in America, less than half the number who watched last year. In September the Emmys, television’s equivalent, notched 6.4m, another record low.

The pandemic has not helped: most of last year’s big films were postponed because cinemas were shut, dimming the Oscars’ allure. But the decline of interest in arts awards has been long in the making (see chart). It signifies growing boredom with ritzy galas, in an age when lots of stars broadcast directly to Instagram themselves. It betokens frustration in some quarters with a lack of diversity in judging panels and nominees—and, in others, with the perceived left-wing bias of the industry. More than that, though, it is evidence of a deeper shift in the entertainment world, in which the common popular culture that awards shows celebrate is itself being eroded.

\n\n\n

Could it simply be that the general population no longer wants to see the entitled rich and privileged preach about Covid, racism and wealth inequality?

\n", "content_html": "

\nFrom The Economist:

\n\n

The bigger challenge may be persuading viewers to tune in from home. If other awards shows are a portent, the Oscars are in for a difficult night. Last month the Grammy music awards got just 9.3m viewers in America, less than half the number who watched last year. In September the Emmys, television’s equivalent, notched 6.4m, another record low.

The pandemic has not helped: most of last year’s big films were postponed because cinemas were shut, dimming the Oscars’ allure. But the decline of interest in arts awards has been long in the making (see chart). It signifies growing boredom with ritzy galas, in an age when lots of stars broadcast directly to Instagram themselves. It betokens frustration in some quarters with a lack of diversity in judging panels and nominees—and, in others, with the perceived left-wing bias of the industry. More than that, though, it is evidence of a deeper shift in the entertainment world, in which the common popular culture that awards shows celebrate is itself being eroded.

\n\n\n

Could it simply be that the general population no longer wants to see the entitled rich and privileged preach about Covid, racism and wealth inequality?

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/04/26/life-in-color-with-david-attenborough/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/04/26/life-in-color-with-david-attenborough/", "title": "Life in Color With David Attenborough", "date_published": "2021-04-26T01:06:38-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-04-26T01:06:38-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\nA new on Netflix - Life in Color with David Attenborough.

\n\n

Animals can use color for all kinds of different reasons — whether to win a mate or beat a rival, to warn off an enemy or to hide from one. To understand how these colors work, we need to see them from an animal’s perspective. With new cameras developed especially for this series, now we can.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\nA new on Netflix - Life in Color with David Attenborough.

\n\n

Animals can use color for all kinds of different reasons — whether to win a mate or beat a rival, to warn off an enemy or to hide from one. To understand how these colors work, we need to see them from an animal’s perspective. With new cameras developed especially for this series, now we can.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/04/25/apple-is-redifining-the-cpu/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/04/25/apple-is-redifining-the-cpu/", "title": "Apple is redifining the importance of the CPU", "date_published": "2021-04-25T22:13:58-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-04-25T22:13:58-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Joel Hruska writing over at Extreme Tech:

\n\n

If that doesn’t seem like a fusillade across x86’s metaphorical bow, consider the issue from a different perspective: According to Apple, the M1 is the right CPU for a $699 computer, and a $999 computer, and a $1,699 computer. It’s the right chip if you want maximum battery life and the right CPU for optimal performance. Want the amazing performance of an M1 iMac, but can’t afford (or have no need) for the expensive display? Buy a $699 Mac mini, with exactly the same CPU. Apple’s M1 positioning, evaluated in its totality, claims the CPU is cheap and unremarkable enough to be sold at $699, powerful and capable enough to sell at $1699, and power-efficient enough to power both a tablet and a pair of laptops priced in-between.

\n\n\n

I have said it in the past - when Apple enters a market place with their own product, they don’t compete in the traditional sense. The redefine and tilt the market to its advantage.

\n\n

In a world of command line machines, they jumpstarted the modern computer interface with the Mac:

\n\n

\n\n

The did it with the music industry with their Rip,Burn,Mix ad campaign:

\n\n
\n\n\n


\nThey redefined the mobile industry with the iPhone:

\n\n
\n\n\n


\nIn each of those instances, they completely changed the tech environment to their advantage. The Mac made every other DOS based machine look ancient. The iPod and the Rip, Mix, Burn campaign re-imagined the music distribution industry to an all digital mobile delivery. And the iPhone upended the status quo in the mobile industry.

\n\n

And now they are taking away the importance of the CPU in the desktop. Apple is relegating the CPU to just another bullet point in the long list of tech specs. It is no longer the central driver of performance or price differentiator. Apple is making the form factor the driving differentiator.

\n\n

And this plays into Apple strength. No one else can really compete with Apple on the form factor. If I were Intel I would be afraid. Very afraid.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Joel Hruska writing over at Extreme Tech:

\n\n

If that doesn’t seem like a fusillade across x86’s metaphorical bow, consider the issue from a different perspective: According to Apple, the M1 is the right CPU for a $699 computer, and a $999 computer, and a $1,699 computer. It’s the right chip if you want maximum battery life and the right CPU for optimal performance. Want the amazing performance of an M1 iMac, but can’t afford (or have no need) for the expensive display? Buy a $699 Mac mini, with exactly the same CPU. Apple’s M1 positioning, evaluated in its totality, claims the CPU is cheap and unremarkable enough to be sold at $699, powerful and capable enough to sell at $1699, and power-efficient enough to power both a tablet and a pair of laptops priced in-between.

\n\n\n

I have said it in the past - when Apple enters a market place with their own product, they don’t compete in the traditional sense. The redefine and tilt the market to its advantage.

\n\n

In a world of command line machines, they jumpstarted the modern computer interface with the Mac:

\n\n

\n\n

The did it with the music industry with their Rip,Burn,Mix ad campaign:

\n\n
\n\n\n


\nThey redefined the mobile industry with the iPhone:

\n\n
\n\n\n


\nIn each of those instances, they completely changed the tech environment to their advantage. The Mac made every other DOS based machine look ancient. The iPod and the Rip, Mix, Burn campaign re-imagined the music distribution industry to an all digital mobile delivery. And the iPhone upended the status quo in the mobile industry.

\n\n

And now they are taking away the importance of the CPU in the desktop. Apple is relegating the CPU to just another bullet point in the long list of tech specs. It is no longer the central driver of performance or price differentiator. Apple is making the form factor the driving differentiator.

\n\n

And this plays into Apple strength. No one else can really compete with Apple on the form factor. If I were Intel I would be afraid. Very afraid.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/04/24/m1-imac-24-inch/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/04/24/m1-imac-24-inch/", "title": "M1 iMac 24-Inch", "date_published": "2021-04-24T02:13:34-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-04-24T02:13:34-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

John Grubber on the new iMac 24-inch machines:

\n\n

These new iMacs are just 11.5mm thick. How thin is that? Apple Watch Series 6 is 10.7mm thick. These new iMacs are less than 1mm thicker than a goddamned Apple Watch. They’re so thin Apple had to put the Ethernet port on the power adapter — the iMac itself is too thin. I’ve seen a bunch of Debbie Downer-type reactions to this, asking “Who cares how thin a desktop is? Just make it thicker and put more ports on it and stuff.” That’s the same sort of perspective that, 20+ years ago, had critics asking “Who cares what color plastic your computer is?”

Making these new iMacs super thin is cool. It’s a statement. From the side they look like big 24-inch iPads. If you don’t think that’s cool and that cool is something Apple should aspire to in its design and engineering, I have no idea why you’re reading anything I write.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

John Grubber on the new iMac 24-inch machines:

\n\n

These new iMacs are just 11.5mm thick. How thin is that? Apple Watch Series 6 is 10.7mm thick. These new iMacs are less than 1mm thicker than a goddamned Apple Watch. They’re so thin Apple had to put the Ethernet port on the power adapter — the iMac itself is too thin. I’ve seen a bunch of Debbie Downer-type reactions to this, asking “Who cares how thin a desktop is? Just make it thicker and put more ports on it and stuff.” That’s the same sort of perspective that, 20+ years ago, had critics asking “Who cares what color plastic your computer is?”

Making these new iMacs super thin is cool. It’s a statement. From the side they look like big 24-inch iPads. If you don’t think that’s cool and that cool is something Apple should aspire to in its design and engineering, I have no idea why you’re reading anything I write.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/04/22/indias-descent-into-covid-hell/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/04/22/indias-descent-into-covid-hell/", "title": "India's Descent into Covid Hell", "date_published": "2021-04-22T22:23:24-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-04-22T22:23:24-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "\n\n\n


\n\n

Dr Amit Thadhani, director of Niramaya hospital in Mumbai, which is only treating Covid patients, said he had given warnings about a virulent second wave back in February but they had gone ignored. He said now his hospital was “completely full and if a patient gets discharged, the bed is filled within minutes”. Ten days ago, the hospital ran out of oxygen, but alternative supplies were found just in time.

[…]

Thadhani said this time round the virus was “much more aggressive and much more infectious” and was now predominately affecting young people. “Now it is people in their 20s and 30s who are coming in with very severe symptoms and there is a lot of mortality among young people,” he said.

The haunting blare of ambulance sirens continued to ring out across the capital almost non-stop. Inside Lok Nayak government hospital in Delhi, the largest Covid facility in the capital, overburdened facilities and a shortage of oxygen cylinders meant there was two to a bed, while outside patients waiting for beds gasped for air on stretchers and in ambulances, while sobbing relatives stood by their sides. Some sat with oxygen cylinders they had bought themselves out of desperation. Others died waiting in the hospital car park.

\n\n\n

It’s breathtaking how quickly COVID can erupt. India had just 11,000 cases a day in early February. As of yesterday, they set a record with over 310,000 cases. A warning to all of us in the United States to keep wearing masks and following the social distancing guidelines.

\n", "content_html": "\n\n\n


\n\n

Dr Amit Thadhani, director of Niramaya hospital in Mumbai, which is only treating Covid patients, said he had given warnings about a virulent second wave back in February but they had gone ignored. He said now his hospital was “completely full and if a patient gets discharged, the bed is filled within minutes”. Ten days ago, the hospital ran out of oxygen, but alternative supplies were found just in time.

[…]

Thadhani said this time round the virus was “much more aggressive and much more infectious” and was now predominately affecting young people. “Now it is people in their 20s and 30s who are coming in with very severe symptoms and there is a lot of mortality among young people,” he said.

The haunting blare of ambulance sirens continued to ring out across the capital almost non-stop. Inside Lok Nayak government hospital in Delhi, the largest Covid facility in the capital, overburdened facilities and a shortage of oxygen cylinders meant there was two to a bed, while outside patients waiting for beds gasped for air on stretchers and in ambulances, while sobbing relatives stood by their sides. Some sat with oxygen cylinders they had bought themselves out of desperation. Others died waiting in the hospital car park.

\n\n\n

It’s breathtaking how quickly COVID can erupt. India had just 11,000 cases a day in early February. As of yesterday, they set a record with over 310,000 cases. A warning to all of us in the United States to keep wearing masks and following the social distancing guidelines.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/04/20/ingenuity-liftoff/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/04/20/ingenuity-liftoff/", "title": "Ingenuity Liftoff!", "date_published": "2021-04-20T01:04:53-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-04-20T01:04:53-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\nThe Ingenuity helicopter took off and hovered for about 30 seconds in its first flight early this morning.

\n\n

The solar-powered helicopter first became airborne at 3:34 a.m. EDT (12:34 a.m. PDT) — 12:33 Local Mean Solar Time (Mars time) — a time the Ingenuity team determined would have optimal energy and flight conditions. Altimeter data indicate Ingenuity climbed to its prescribed maximum altitude of 10 feet (3 meters) and maintained a stable hover for 30 seconds. It then descended, touching back down on the surface of Mars after logging a total of 39.1 seconds of flight. Additional details on the test are expected in upcoming downlinks.

Ingenuity’s initial flight demonstration was autonomous — piloted by onboard guidance, navigation, and control systems running algorithms developed by the team at JPL. Because data must be sent to and returned from the Red Planet over hundreds of millions of miles using orbiting satellites and NASA’s Deep Space Network, Ingenuity cannot be flown with a joystick, and its flight was not observable from Earth in real time.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\nThe Ingenuity helicopter took off and hovered for about 30 seconds in its first flight early this morning.

\n\n

The solar-powered helicopter first became airborne at 3:34 a.m. EDT (12:34 a.m. PDT) — 12:33 Local Mean Solar Time (Mars time) — a time the Ingenuity team determined would have optimal energy and flight conditions. Altimeter data indicate Ingenuity climbed to its prescribed maximum altitude of 10 feet (3 meters) and maintained a stable hover for 30 seconds. It then descended, touching back down on the surface of Mars after logging a total of 39.1 seconds of flight. Additional details on the test are expected in upcoming downlinks.

Ingenuity’s initial flight demonstration was autonomous — piloted by onboard guidance, navigation, and control systems running algorithms developed by the team at JPL. Because data must be sent to and returned from the Red Planet over hundreds of millions of miles using orbiting satellites and NASA’s Deep Space Network, Ingenuity cannot be flown with a joystick, and its flight was not observable from Earth in real time.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/04/20/star-trek-ii-the-wrath-of-khan/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/04/20/star-trek-ii-the-wrath-of-khan/", "title": "Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan", "date_published": "2021-04-20T00:35:45-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-04-20T00:35:45-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

A modern trailer to Star Trek II: Wrath of Khan:

\n\n
\n\n\n


\nThis is the best Start Trek movie they every made. Nearlly 40 years on, it still holds up. Even though the special effects are looking dated. If Paramount used this before a re-release of this to the theaters, I would go see it. I’d bet a lot of people would.

\n", "content_html": "

A modern trailer to Star Trek II: Wrath of Khan:

\n\n
\n\n\n


\nThis is the best Start Trek movie they every made. Nearlly 40 years on, it still holds up. Even though the special effects are looking dated. If Paramount used this before a re-release of this to the theaters, I would go see it. I’d bet a lot of people would.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/04/19/still-need-to-wear-masks/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/04/19/still-need-to-wear-masks/", "title": "Do we Still need to wear masks?", "date_published": "2021-04-19T00:05:51-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-04-19T00:05:51-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

With 25% of the people fully vaccinated and 39.5% with the first dose, does it still make sense for use to wear a mask at all times? Science says that indoors - we should be masking up. But what about outdoors?

\n\n

Shannon Palus writing for Slate:

\n\n

In other words, as the pandemic has progressed, so has our understanding of what safety measures are truly most useful, and which aren’t worth the alcohol wipes. And I would like to calmly suggest that now is the time we should consider no longer wearing masks when we walk around outside.

I am not suggesting this simply because I am very sick of wearing a mask at all times outside my home. When it comes to coronavirus spread, evidence shows that being outdoors is very, very safe.

[…]

While it’s important to mask in outdoor crowds or if you’re hanging out close to someone in a park, Chagla explains, the main message should be that the outdoors is a safe place to be. He gave me a rough sense of how unlikely outdoor transmission is in the scenario where you’re walking unmasked on the sidewalk and briefly pass someone. First, you or the person you’re passing would have to happen to have an asymptomatic infection, he explained, and then everyone would have to be exhaling and inhaling at just the right moment, and also, exchanging enough particles to actually seed another infection: “You’re talking about a probability of getting hit by a car, and being struck by lightning.”

\n\n\n

While I can’t really argue the points made here - it is probably safe to be outside without a mask. However, beating the epidemic at this point is more about social behavior. Collectively wearing a mask outdoors will be a constant reminder that we are not out of the woods yet, that we still need to keep our guard up.

\n\n

Look I hate wearing a mask as much as the next person. Let’s keep up the effort for a little bit longer. We have already turned the corner - keep on wearing a mask so that we can finally have our lives back this year.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

With 25% of the people fully vaccinated and 39.5% with the first dose, does it still make sense for use to wear a mask at all times? Science says that indoors - we should be masking up. But what about outdoors?

\n\n

Shannon Palus writing for Slate:

\n\n

In other words, as the pandemic has progressed, so has our understanding of what safety measures are truly most useful, and which aren’t worth the alcohol wipes. And I would like to calmly suggest that now is the time we should consider no longer wearing masks when we walk around outside.

I am not suggesting this simply because I am very sick of wearing a mask at all times outside my home. When it comes to coronavirus spread, evidence shows that being outdoors is very, very safe.

[…]

While it’s important to mask in outdoor crowds or if you’re hanging out close to someone in a park, Chagla explains, the main message should be that the outdoors is a safe place to be. He gave me a rough sense of how unlikely outdoor transmission is in the scenario where you’re walking unmasked on the sidewalk and briefly pass someone. First, you or the person you’re passing would have to happen to have an asymptomatic infection, he explained, and then everyone would have to be exhaling and inhaling at just the right moment, and also, exchanging enough particles to actually seed another infection: “You’re talking about a probability of getting hit by a car, and being struck by lightning.”

\n\n\n

While I can’t really argue the points made here - it is probably safe to be outside without a mask. However, beating the epidemic at this point is more about social behavior. Collectively wearing a mask outdoors will be a constant reminder that we are not out of the woods yet, that we still need to keep our guard up.

\n\n

Look I hate wearing a mask as much as the next person. Let’s keep up the effort for a little bit longer. We have already turned the corner - keep on wearing a mask so that we can finally have our lives back this year.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/04/17/another-us-mass-shooting/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/04/17/another-us-mass-shooting/", "title": "Another US mass shooting", "date_published": "2021-04-17T01:44:40-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-04-17T01:44:40-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

In the last month, the US has reported at least 45 mass shootings. Most of these horrifying events don’t even get reported on the news. And why would they? In the United States more than 33,000 people die from gun violence each year.

\n\n

We have become numb to the daily onslaught of death and carnage that rages across our streets. Having the most heavily armed society in the world will not lead to a free society.

\n\n

Arendt offers two points that are salient to our thinking about guns: for one, they insert a hierarchy of some kind, but fundamental nonetheless, and thereby undermine equality. But furthermore, guns pose a monumental challenge to freedom, and particular, the liberty that is the hallmark of any democracy worthy of the name — that is, freedom of speech. Guns do communicate, after all, but in a way that is contrary to free speech aspirations: for, guns chasten speech.

This becomes clear if only you pry a little more deeply into the N.R.A.’s logic behind an armed society. An armed society is polite, by their thinking, precisely because guns would compel everyone to tamp down eccentric behavior, and refrain from actions that might seem threatening. The suggestion is that guns liberally interspersed throughout society would cause us all to walk gingerly — not make any sudden, unexpected moves — and watch what we say, how we act, whom we might offend.

\n\n\n

It will lead to a fearful, paranoid, and frightened society. For the future of our children and our democracy, lets stop worshipping our great Gun god.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

In the last month, the US has reported at least 45 mass shootings. Most of these horrifying events don’t even get reported on the news. And why would they? In the United States more than 33,000 people die from gun violence each year.

\n\n

We have become numb to the daily onslaught of death and carnage that rages across our streets. Having the most heavily armed society in the world will not lead to a free society.

\n\n

Arendt offers two points that are salient to our thinking about guns: for one, they insert a hierarchy of some kind, but fundamental nonetheless, and thereby undermine equality. But furthermore, guns pose a monumental challenge to freedom, and particular, the liberty that is the hallmark of any democracy worthy of the name — that is, freedom of speech. Guns do communicate, after all, but in a way that is contrary to free speech aspirations: for, guns chasten speech.

This becomes clear if only you pry a little more deeply into the N.R.A.’s logic behind an armed society. An armed society is polite, by their thinking, precisely because guns would compel everyone to tamp down eccentric behavior, and refrain from actions that might seem threatening. The suggestion is that guns liberally interspersed throughout society would cause us all to walk gingerly — not make any sudden, unexpected moves — and watch what we say, how we act, whom we might offend.

\n\n\n

It will lead to a fearful, paranoid, and frightened society. For the future of our children and our democracy, lets stop worshipping our great Gun god.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/04/15/twin-pines-mall-equals-loan-pine-mall/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/04/15/twin-pines-mall-equals-loan-pine-mall/", "title": "Twin Pines Mall => Loan Pine Mall", "date_published": "2021-04-15T03:15:07-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-04-15T03:15:07-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Back To The Future is one of my favorite movies of all time - and quite possibly the best script ever written. The writers thought about every minute detail.

\n\n

Todd Vaziri documents one such detail brilliantly:

\n\n
\n

Twin Pines Mall became Lone Pine Mall after Marty changed the future in “Back to the Future” (1985). Is that an Easter Egg or a Thing in the Movie? Let’s find out!

🌲🌲YouTube: https://t.co/ieXT9uVij9 pic.twitter.com/vw7p5fUEHR

— Todd Vaziri (@tvaziri) April 12, 2021
\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Back To The Future is one of my favorite movies of all time - and quite possibly the best script ever written. The writers thought about every minute detail.

\n\n

Todd Vaziri documents one such detail brilliantly:

\n\n
\n

Twin Pines Mall became Lone Pine Mall after Marty changed the future in “Back to the Future” (1985). Is that an Easter Egg or a Thing in the Movie? Let’s find out!

🌲🌲YouTube: https://t.co/ieXT9uVij9 pic.twitter.com/vw7p5fUEHR

— Todd Vaziri (@tvaziri) April 12, 2021
\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/04/15/mrna-vaccines-are-looking-good/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/04/15/mrna-vaccines-are-looking-good/", "title": "mRNA Vaccines are Looking Good", "date_published": "2021-04-15T02:34:27-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-04-15T02:34:27-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Sarah Zhang in The Atlantic:

\n\n

mRNA vaccines are similarly new, but they have so far racked up a good safety record. So many doses have been administered that these unusual blood clots—or any serious one-in-a-million event—would very likely have shown up by now. Back in December, experts quickly noticed and warned the public about a handful of severe allergic reactions to the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines, which is why vaccination sites now monitor recipients for 15 to 30 minutes after the jab.

\n\n\n

At the end of the day - its is all about managing risks. The Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines have both demonstrated 100% effectiveness preventing serious disease and hospitalizations. Just get vaccinated!

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Sarah Zhang in The Atlantic:

\n\n

mRNA vaccines are similarly new, but they have so far racked up a good safety record. So many doses have been administered that these unusual blood clots—or any serious one-in-a-million event—would very likely have shown up by now. Back in December, experts quickly noticed and warned the public about a handful of severe allergic reactions to the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines, which is why vaccination sites now monitor recipients for 15 to 30 minutes after the jab.

\n\n\n

At the end of the day - its is all about managing risks. The Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna vaccines have both demonstrated 100% effectiveness preventing serious disease and hospitalizations. Just get vaccinated!

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/04/07/mlb-moves-2021-all-star-game-from-atlanta-in/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/04/07/mlb-moves-2021-all-star-game-from-atlanta-in/", "title": "'21 All-Star Game, Draft Moved From Atlanta", "date_published": "2021-04-07T23:07:51-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-04-07T23:07:51-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Major League Baseball announced on Friday that it will relocate the 2021 All-Star Game and MLB Draft, originally scheduled to take place in Atlanta, to a to-be-determined location. The decision comes a little more than a week after the passage of S.B. 202, a Georgia law that President Joe Biden criticized earlier this week, saying that it will restrict voting access for residents of the state.

Commissioner Rob Manfred said in a statement that the decision to move the All-Star Game was “the best way to demonstrate our values as a sport” and was made after consultation with teams, former and current players, the MLB Players Association and The Players Alliance, among others.

“Major League Baseball fundamentally supports voting rights for all Americans and opposes restrictions to the ballot box,” Manfred said. “In 2020, MLB became the first professional sports league to join the non-partisan Civic Alliance to help build a future in which everyone participates in shaping the United States. We proudly used our platform to encourage baseball fans and communities throughout our country to perform their civic duty and actively participate in the voting process. Fair access to voting continues to have our game’s unwavering support.”

\n\n\n

Good on the MLB. Note to Republicans: If you pass restrictive laws, society will retaliate. The downside to this is that it hurts exactly the people that we are trying to protect the rights of.

\n", "content_html": "

Major League Baseball announced on Friday that it will relocate the 2021 All-Star Game and MLB Draft, originally scheduled to take place in Atlanta, to a to-be-determined location. The decision comes a little more than a week after the passage of S.B. 202, a Georgia law that President Joe Biden criticized earlier this week, saying that it will restrict voting access for residents of the state.

Commissioner Rob Manfred said in a statement that the decision to move the All-Star Game was “the best way to demonstrate our values as a sport” and was made after consultation with teams, former and current players, the MLB Players Association and The Players Alliance, among others.

“Major League Baseball fundamentally supports voting rights for all Americans and opposes restrictions to the ballot box,” Manfred said. “In 2020, MLB became the first professional sports league to join the non-partisan Civic Alliance to help build a future in which everyone participates in shaping the United States. We proudly used our platform to encourage baseball fans and communities throughout our country to perform their civic duty and actively participate in the voting process. Fair access to voting continues to have our game’s unwavering support.”

\n\n\n

Good on the MLB. Note to Republicans: If you pass restrictive laws, society will retaliate. The downside to this is that it hurts exactly the people that we are trying to protect the rights of.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/04/04/fears-of-technology-are-fears-of-capitalism/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/04/04/fears-of-technology-are-fears-of-capitalism/", "title": "Fears of Technology Are Fears of Capitalism", "date_published": "2021-04-04T00:36:54-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-04-04T00:36:54-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

An interesting by Ted Chiang from an (author of Exhalation) interview with Ezra Klein on our fear of technology:

\n\n

I tend to think that most fears about A.I. are best understood as fears about capitalism. And I think that this is actually true of most fears of technology, too. Most of our fears or anxieties about technology are best understood as fears or anxiety about how capitalism will use technology against us. And technology and capitalism have been so closely intertwined that it’s hard to distinguish the two.

Let’s think about it this way. How much would we fear any technology, whether A.I. or some other technology, how much would you fear it if we lived in a world that was a lot like Denmark or if the entire world was run sort of on the principles of one of the Scandinavian countries? There’s universal health care. Everyone has child care, free college maybe. And maybe there’s some version of universal basic income there.

Now if the entire world operates according to — is run on those principles, how much do you worry about a new technology then? I think much, much less than we do now. Most of the things that we worry about under the mode of capitalism that the U.S practices, that is going to put people out of work, that is going to make people’s lives harder, because corporations will see it as a way to increase their profits and reduce their costs. It’s not intrinsic to that technology. It’s not that technology fundamentally is about putting people out of work.

It’s capitalism that wants to reduce costs and reduce costs by laying people off. It’s not that like all technology suddenly becomes benign in this world. But it’s like, in a world where we have really strong social safety nets, then you could maybe actually evaluate sort of the pros and cons of technology as a technology, as opposed to seeing it through how capitalism is going to use it against us. How are giant corporations going to use this to increase their profits at our expense?

And so, I feel like that is kind of the unexamined assumption in a lot of discussions about the inevitability of technological change and technologically-induced unemployment. Those are fundamentally about capitalism and the fact that we are sort of unable to question capitalism. We take it as an assumption that it will always exist and that we will never escape it. And that’s sort of the background radiation that we are all having to live with. But yeah, I’d like us to be able to separate an evaluation of the merits and drawbacks of technology from the framework of capitalism.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

An interesting by Ted Chiang from an (author of Exhalation) interview with Ezra Klein on our fear of technology:

\n\n

I tend to think that most fears about A.I. are best understood as fears about capitalism. And I think that this is actually true of most fears of technology, too. Most of our fears or anxieties about technology are best understood as fears or anxiety about how capitalism will use technology against us. And technology and capitalism have been so closely intertwined that it’s hard to distinguish the two.

Let’s think about it this way. How much would we fear any technology, whether A.I. or some other technology, how much would you fear it if we lived in a world that was a lot like Denmark or if the entire world was run sort of on the principles of one of the Scandinavian countries? There’s universal health care. Everyone has child care, free college maybe. And maybe there’s some version of universal basic income there.

Now if the entire world operates according to — is run on those principles, how much do you worry about a new technology then? I think much, much less than we do now. Most of the things that we worry about under the mode of capitalism that the U.S practices, that is going to put people out of work, that is going to make people’s lives harder, because corporations will see it as a way to increase their profits and reduce their costs. It’s not intrinsic to that technology. It’s not that technology fundamentally is about putting people out of work.

It’s capitalism that wants to reduce costs and reduce costs by laying people off. It’s not that like all technology suddenly becomes benign in this world. But it’s like, in a world where we have really strong social safety nets, then you could maybe actually evaluate sort of the pros and cons of technology as a technology, as opposed to seeing it through how capitalism is going to use it against us. How are giant corporations going to use this to increase their profits at our expense?

And so, I feel like that is kind of the unexamined assumption in a lot of discussions about the inevitability of technological change and technologically-induced unemployment. Those are fundamentally about capitalism and the fact that we are sort of unable to question capitalism. We take it as an assumption that it will always exist and that we will never escape it. And that’s sort of the background radiation that we are all having to live with. But yeah, I’d like us to be able to separate an evaluation of the merits and drawbacks of technology from the framework of capitalism.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/04/03/malcom-gladwell-on-saturday-night-live/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/04/03/malcom-gladwell-on-saturday-night-live/", "title": "Malcolm Gladwell on Saturday Night Live", "date_published": "2021-04-03T00:24:07-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-04-03T00:24:07-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\nMalcolm Gladwell talks about Alec Baldwin’s impersonation of Donald Trump. He is not a fan. The thing that stood out to me is his commentary on Saturday Night Live in general:

\n\n

You can't be an effective satirist if you are so deeply complicit in the object of your satire.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\nMalcolm Gladwell talks about Alec Baldwin’s impersonation of Donald Trump. He is not a fan. The thing that stood out to me is his commentary on Saturday Night Live in general:

\n\n

You can't be an effective satirist if you are so deeply complicit in the object of your satire.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/04/01/the-last-blues-man/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/04/01/the-last-blues-man/", "title": "The Last Blues man", "date_published": "2021-04-01T23:58:26-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-04-01T23:58:26-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\n\n

73 year old Jimmy “Duck” Holmes just got nominated for a Grammy. He has already won. His legacy will outlast him. Just as blues men from the 20’s inspired British musicians to take up the art, he will inspire musicians decades from now.

\n\n

When you got something to share - thats an honor.

\n\n\n

A true blues man. Three chords and the truth!

\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\n\n

73 year old Jimmy “Duck” Holmes just got nominated for a Grammy. He has already won. His legacy will outlast him. Just as blues men from the 20’s inspired British musicians to take up the art, he will inspire musicians decades from now.

\n\n

When you got something to share - thats an honor.

\n\n\n

A true blues man. Three chords and the truth!

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/03/31/the-overspent-american/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/03/31/the-overspent-american/", "title": "The Overspent American", "date_published": "2021-03-31T20:07:07-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-03-31T20:07:07-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\n\n

Comfort is no longer enough, people want luxury

\n\n

That statement sums up the American consumer psyche. This video came out 20 years ago - before the pervasiveness of social media. Facebook, Instagram and the horde of internet influencers have taken the ‘keeping up with the jones’ to a whole new level.

\n\n

Financial freedom is not making more money. Financial freedom is not needing more money.

\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\n\n

Comfort is no longer enough, people want luxury

\n\n

That statement sums up the American consumer psyche. This video came out 20 years ago - before the pervasiveness of social media. Facebook, Instagram and the horde of internet influencers have taken the ‘keeping up with the jones’ to a whole new level.

\n\n

Financial freedom is not making more money. Financial freedom is not needing more money.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/03/31/walking-to-work/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/03/31/walking-to-work/", "title": "Walking to Work - 56 miles", "date_published": "2021-03-31T01:16:11-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-03-31T01:16:11-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\n\n

A few monts ago the dean asked me to give a lecture at the new fancy building at the mothership campus. I said sure John, I’ll do that. Why don’t I walk to the lecture? From home.

\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\n\n

A few monts ago the dean asked me to give a lecture at the new fancy building at the mothership campus. I said sure John, I’ll do that. Why don’t I walk to the lecture? From home.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/03/30/moderna-and-pfizer-vaccines-are-highly-effective/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/03/30/moderna-and-pfizer-vaccines-are-highly-effective/", "title": "Moderna and Pfizer Vaccines are highly effective", "date_published": "2021-03-30T03:51:35-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-03-30T03:51:35-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

The New York Times:

\n\n

The coronavirus vaccines made by Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech are proving highly effective at preventing symptomatic and asymptomatic infections under real-world conditions, federal health researchers reported on Monday.

Consistent with clinical trial data, a two-dose regimen prevented 90 percent of infections by two weeks after the second shot. One dose prevented 80 percent of infections by two weeks after vaccination. […]

Scientists have debated whether vaccinated people may still get asymptomatic infections and transmit the virus to others. The new study, by researchers at the C.D.C., suggested that since infections were so rare, transmission is likely rare, too.

There also has been concern that variants may render the vaccines less effective. The study’s results do not confirm that fear. Troubling variants were circulating during the time of the study — from December 14, 2020 to March 13, 2021 — yet the vaccines still provided powerful protection.

\n\n\n

The vaccines don’t just prevent the vaccinated from getting sick, but they almost certainly stop asymptomatic spread, too. This is great news as we look forward to returning to normal. Now the challenge will be to get everyone to take the vaccine.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

The New York Times:

\n\n

The coronavirus vaccines made by Moderna and Pfizer-BioNTech are proving highly effective at preventing symptomatic and asymptomatic infections under real-world conditions, federal health researchers reported on Monday.

Consistent with clinical trial data, a two-dose regimen prevented 90 percent of infections by two weeks after the second shot. One dose prevented 80 percent of infections by two weeks after vaccination. […]

Scientists have debated whether vaccinated people may still get asymptomatic infections and transmit the virus to others. The new study, by researchers at the C.D.C., suggested that since infections were so rare, transmission is likely rare, too.

There also has been concern that variants may render the vaccines less effective. The study’s results do not confirm that fear. Troubling variants were circulating during the time of the study — from December 14, 2020 to March 13, 2021 — yet the vaccines still provided powerful protection.

\n\n\n

The vaccines don’t just prevent the vaccinated from getting sick, but they almost certainly stop asymptomatic spread, too. This is great news as we look forward to returning to normal. Now the challenge will be to get everyone to take the vaccine.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/03/30/using-mermaid-with-jekyll/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/03/30/using-mermaid-with-jekyll/", "title": "Using mermaid with Octopress/Jekyll", "date_published": "2021-03-30T02:50:51-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-03-30T02:50:51-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Markdown is a pretty nice tool for developers to write documents. But it doesn’t support creating graphs & charts easily. Mermaid is a powerful js library which can convert a text described graph or chart and render it. It’s a perfect tool when using with Octopress (A bloging tool based on Jekyll). Here I’ll show you how to integrate the mermaid with minimal effort into your Octopress (or Jekyll) website.

\n\n

For the purposes of this tutorial - I will be be using Octopress, but this should be fairly trivial to also add this to your Jekyll template.

\n\n

Integrating mermaid.js directly

\n\n

While there is a Jekyll Mermaid plugin available, it is much more complicated to setup and use. We will be using the mermaid CDN directly. Lets get started.

\n\n

In your Octopress blog directory, navigate to the source/_includes/head.html file and add the following anywhere between the tags. If you are using Jekyll, just add it to where ever your header tags are defined (usually in _layouts/default.html).

\n\n
1\n2\n
<script src="https://cdn.jsdelivr.net/npm/mermaid/dist/mermaid.min.js"></script>\n<script>mermaid.initialize({startOnLoad:true});</script>\n
\n\n\n

Since Markdown is pretty friendly to html tags, you can simply add a diagram by wrapping mermaid markup in a div with class “mermaid” for example:

\n\n
1\n2\n3\n4\n5\n6\n7\n
<div class="mermaid">\ngraph LR\n    A[Hard edge] -->|Link text| B(Round edge)\n    B --> C{Decision}\n    C -->|One| D[Result one]\n    C -->|Two| E[Result two]\n</div>\n
\n\n\n

Which when rendered outputs:

\n\n
\n
\ngraph LR\n A[Hard edge] -->|Link text| B(Round edge)\n B --> C{Decision}\n C -->|One| D[Result one]\n C -->|Two| E[Result two]\n
\n
\n\n\n


\n\n

You can try out your code before deployment using a live editor. Mermaid documentation can be found here.

\n\n

Thats it! If you have any questions feel free to get in touch or leave a comment.

\n", "content_html": "

Markdown is a pretty nice tool for developers to write documents. But it doesn’t support creating graphs & charts easily. Mermaid is a powerful js library which can convert a text described graph or chart and render it. It’s a perfect tool when using with Octopress (A bloging tool based on Jekyll). Here I’ll show you how to integrate the mermaid with minimal effort into your Octopress (or Jekyll) website.

\n\n

For the purposes of this tutorial - I will be be using Octopress, but this should be fairly trivial to also add this to your Jekyll template.

\n\n

Integrating mermaid.js directly

\n\n

While there is a Jekyll Mermaid plugin available, it is much more complicated to setup and use. We will be using the mermaid CDN directly. Lets get started.

\n\n

In your Octopress blog directory, navigate to the source/_includes/head.html file and add the following anywhere between the tags. If you are using Jekyll, just add it to where ever your header tags are defined (usually in _layouts/default.html).

\n\n
1\n2\n
<script src="https://cdn.jsdelivr.net/npm/mermaid/dist/mermaid.min.js"></script>\n<script>mermaid.initialize({startOnLoad:true});</script>\n
\n\n\n

Since Markdown is pretty friendly to html tags, you can simply add a diagram by wrapping mermaid markup in a div with class “mermaid” for example:

\n\n
1\n2\n3\n4\n5\n6\n7\n
<div class="mermaid">\ngraph LR\n    A[Hard edge] -->|Link text| B(Round edge)\n    B --> C{Decision}\n    C -->|One| D[Result one]\n    C -->|Two| E[Result two]\n</div>\n
\n\n\n

Which when rendered outputs:

\n\n
\n
\ngraph LR\n A[Hard edge] -->|Link text| B(Round edge)\n B --> C{Decision}\n C -->|One| D[Result one]\n C -->|Two| E[Result two]\n
\n
\n\n\n


\n\n

You can try out your code before deployment using a live editor. Mermaid documentation can be found here.

\n\n

Thats it! If you have any questions feel free to get in touch or leave a comment.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/03/29/church-organ-music-with-a-commodore-64/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/03/29/church-organ-music-with-a-commodore-64/", "title": "Church Organ Music With a Commodore 64", "date_published": "2021-03-29T13:40:05-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-03-29T13:40:05-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\nLinus Akesson he remapped the keys of a Commodore 64 so he could play it like an accordion, ran it though a reverb machine, and created the sixtyforgan. The Bach piece he plays at the end of the video above sounds so much like it’s being played on an organ.

\n\n

Spring reverb + Commodore 64. I have said it before, the Commodore 64 was the greatest home computer ever made. I can’t tell you how many fellow developers started their programming careers on that machine. Far ahead of its time.

\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\nLinus Akesson he remapped the keys of a Commodore 64 so he could play it like an accordion, ran it though a reverb machine, and created the sixtyforgan. The Bach piece he plays at the end of the video above sounds so much like it’s being played on an organ.

\n\n

Spring reverb + Commodore 64. I have said it before, the Commodore 64 was the greatest home computer ever made. I can’t tell you how many fellow developers started their programming careers on that machine. Far ahead of its time.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/03/25/californication/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/03/25/californication/", "title": "Album of the Week: Californication", "date_published": "2021-03-25T02:44:02-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-03-25T02:44:02-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Welcome to a new weekly series of blog posts inspired by my upgrade to a Cambridge Audio CXN V2 Stereo Network Streamer. What is a network audio streamer you ask? That is one complicated rabbit hole to go down. Simply put, its is a device that lets you stream music from the cloud. But that is a discussion for another time.

\n\n

The idea here is to present an album each week that I have throughly enjoyed. For this inaugural week it is Californication by the Red Hot Chili Peppers.

\n\n

Greg Tate sums it best:

\n\n

Historically, though, RHCP albums have been long on sock-it-to-me passion but short on the songcraft that made their hero George Clinton’s most acid-addled experiments lyrically haunting and melodically infectious. Up until this new Peppers joint, Californication, that is. For Lord knows what reasons — age, sobriety, Blonde on Blonde ambitions or worship at the altar of Billy Corgan — they’ve settled down and written a whole album’s worth of tunes that tickle the ear, romance the booty, swell the heart, moisten the tear ducts and dilate the third eye. All this inside of song forms and production that reveal sublime new facets upon each hearing.

\n\n\n

Anthony Kiedis has found the blues. John Frusciante’s work on the guitar is right up there with Hendrix. Flea’s leads and bass lines on solidifies him as one of, if not the bassist of the past three decades. With the title track Californication, RHCP has blown past their funk-rap past outing to something that is truly a classic.

\n\n

It's the edge of the world and all of Western civilization
The sun may rise in the East at least it's settled in a final location
It's understood that Hollywood sells Californication

\n\n\n

And we are all buying it.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Welcome to a new weekly series of blog posts inspired by my upgrade to a Cambridge Audio CXN V2 Stereo Network Streamer. What is a network audio streamer you ask? That is one complicated rabbit hole to go down. Simply put, its is a device that lets you stream music from the cloud. But that is a discussion for another time.

\n\n

The idea here is to present an album each week that I have throughly enjoyed. For this inaugural week it is Californication by the Red Hot Chili Peppers.

\n\n

Greg Tate sums it best:

\n\n

Historically, though, RHCP albums have been long on sock-it-to-me passion but short on the songcraft that made their hero George Clinton’s most acid-addled experiments lyrically haunting and melodically infectious. Up until this new Peppers joint, Californication, that is. For Lord knows what reasons — age, sobriety, Blonde on Blonde ambitions or worship at the altar of Billy Corgan — they’ve settled down and written a whole album’s worth of tunes that tickle the ear, romance the booty, swell the heart, moisten the tear ducts and dilate the third eye. All this inside of song forms and production that reveal sublime new facets upon each hearing.

\n\n\n

Anthony Kiedis has found the blues. John Frusciante’s work on the guitar is right up there with Hendrix. Flea’s leads and bass lines on solidifies him as one of, if not the bassist of the past three decades. With the title track Californication, RHCP has blown past their funk-rap past outing to something that is truly a classic.

\n\n

It's the edge of the world and all of Western civilization
The sun may rise in the East at least it's settled in a final location
It's understood that Hollywood sells Californication

\n\n\n

And we are all buying it.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/03/24/whatever-it-takes-to-get-things-done/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/03/24/whatever-it-takes-to-get-things-done/", "title": "whatever it takes to get things done", "date_published": "2021-03-24T02:39:59-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-03-24T02:39:59-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

David A. Graham in The Atlantic:

\n\n

That writer was me, and the quick passage of now-President Biden’s $1.9 trillion coronavirus-relief package is, among other things, a rebuke of my analysis. Biden’s success suggests that I misunderstood how his many years in the Senate have shaped his approach to politics.

David A. Graham: Biden is in denial about the Republican Party

I thought that Biden’s frequent paeans to the Senate of yore meant that he would prioritize cutting deals across the aisle above all. During his presidential campaign, Biden was happy to encourage this impression. But there’s another, contradictory lesson of the old Senate, and it’s the one that Biden has followed thus far as president: You do whatever it takes to get things done.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

David A. Graham in The Atlantic:

\n\n

That writer was me, and the quick passage of now-President Biden’s $1.9 trillion coronavirus-relief package is, among other things, a rebuke of my analysis. Biden’s success suggests that I misunderstood how his many years in the Senate have shaped his approach to politics.

David A. Graham: Biden is in denial about the Republican Party

I thought that Biden’s frequent paeans to the Senate of yore meant that he would prioritize cutting deals across the aisle above all. During his presidential campaign, Biden was happy to encourage this impression. But there’s another, contradictory lesson of the old Senate, and it’s the one that Biden has followed thus far as president: You do whatever it takes to get things done.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/03/24/30-cover-songs-better-than-the-originals/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/03/24/30-cover-songs-better-than-the-originals/", "title": "Cover Songs Better Than the Originals", "date_published": "2021-03-24T02:21:15-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-03-24T02:21:15-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

An amazing playlist of covers and the original songs.

\n\n\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

An amazing playlist of covers and the original songs.

\n\n\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/03/22/meghan-markle-didnt-do-the-work/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/03/22/meghan-markle-didnt-do-the-work/", "title": "Meghan Markle Didn't do the work", "date_published": "2021-03-22T02:46:50-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-03-22T02:46:50-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Caitlin Flanagan in The Atlantic:

\n\n

With the calumny of the flower-girl dresses cleared up, it was time to roll a piece of previously recorded tape, featuring Meghan, Harry, and Oprah squeezed into the young couple’s chicken coop, which is populated with “rescue chickens.” (Meghan: “I just love rescuing.”) What was the best thing about their new life? Oprah asked from inside the coop. The chance “to live authentically,” Meghan said, as though she and Harry were mucking out stables in Hertfordshire, not tending to rescue chickens on a $15 million estate. “It’s so basic,” she continued, “but it’s really fulfilling. Just getting back down to basics.

[...]

Part of Meghan’s problem, it turned out, was her naïveté about the workings of the Royal Family, which she had assumed would be similar to the workings of celebrity culture. What was she, Meghan Markle, a simple girl from Los Angeles, to have understood about such an institution as the British? How was she to know that Elizabeth II, by the Grace of God, of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and of her other realms and territories Queen, Head of the Commonwealth, Defender of the Faith was in any way different from the Lady of Gaga? One wonders whether her study of foreign service and international relations, her internship at the American embassy in Argentina, and her work with the UN might have clued her in to the fact that a whole world exists beyond the Jamba Juice on La Brea and the set of Deal or No Deal, on which she had once been one of the beautiful “suitcase girls.” Apparently, they had not.

She told Oprah that she had never even Googled her future husband’s name—a remark that united the viewing world in hilarity, time zone by time zone. It was an assertion that strained credulity, but it was necessary to her contention that she’d had no idea that the Windsors had not, as we now say, “done the work” when it came to exploring their own racial biases. Had she herself done some work by punching her beloved’s name into a search engine, she would have understood that she was not marrying the most racially conscious person on the planet. She would have seen pictures of him dressed as a Nazi at a costume party (his great-granduncle—briefly Edward VIII—had palled around with Adolf Hitler) and a videotape of him introducing a fellow cadet as “our little Paki friend.” The Palace said that “Prince Harry used the term without any malice and as a nickname about a highly popular member of his platoon.” But the palace had no good explanation for why Harry introduced another cadet in the video by saying, “It’s Dan the Man. Fuck me, you look like a raghead.”

[..]

And Harry sat there beside her, 7,000 miles from home, in the land of rich Californians and Meyer lemons and eucalyptus trees trailing Spanish moss. He had plighted his troth to this unexpected and very beautiful woman; he had hurt his grandmother, and alienated his father and his only brother. He had thought that having Bishop Michael Bruce Curry deliver the homily at his wedding would reverse a thousand years of English racial attitudes, but he had been wrong about that.**He was a combat veteran, a prince, the grandson, great-grandson, and great-great-grandson of English monarchs, and now he was going to have to think up some podcasts.

\n\n\n

The amount of entitlement and privilege on display here by these two is repulsive. I don’t feel bad for either of them - Meghan can rescue chickens the rest of her life, and Harry can spend his days in that garden thinking up the next great podcast.

\n\n

I hope they do well. I really do. Just spare us the details. Please.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Caitlin Flanagan in The Atlantic:

\n\n

With the calumny of the flower-girl dresses cleared up, it was time to roll a piece of previously recorded tape, featuring Meghan, Harry, and Oprah squeezed into the young couple’s chicken coop, which is populated with “rescue chickens.” (Meghan: “I just love rescuing.”) What was the best thing about their new life? Oprah asked from inside the coop. The chance “to live authentically,” Meghan said, as though she and Harry were mucking out stables in Hertfordshire, not tending to rescue chickens on a $15 million estate. “It’s so basic,” she continued, “but it’s really fulfilling. Just getting back down to basics.

[...]

Part of Meghan’s problem, it turned out, was her naïveté about the workings of the Royal Family, which she had assumed would be similar to the workings of celebrity culture. What was she, Meghan Markle, a simple girl from Los Angeles, to have understood about such an institution as the British? How was she to know that Elizabeth II, by the Grace of God, of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and of her other realms and territories Queen, Head of the Commonwealth, Defender of the Faith was in any way different from the Lady of Gaga? One wonders whether her study of foreign service and international relations, her internship at the American embassy in Argentina, and her work with the UN might have clued her in to the fact that a whole world exists beyond the Jamba Juice on La Brea and the set of Deal or No Deal, on which she had once been one of the beautiful “suitcase girls.” Apparently, they had not.

She told Oprah that she had never even Googled her future husband’s name—a remark that united the viewing world in hilarity, time zone by time zone. It was an assertion that strained credulity, but it was necessary to her contention that she’d had no idea that the Windsors had not, as we now say, “done the work” when it came to exploring their own racial biases. Had she herself done some work by punching her beloved’s name into a search engine, she would have understood that she was not marrying the most racially conscious person on the planet. She would have seen pictures of him dressed as a Nazi at a costume party (his great-granduncle—briefly Edward VIII—had palled around with Adolf Hitler) and a videotape of him introducing a fellow cadet as “our little Paki friend.” The Palace said that “Prince Harry used the term without any malice and as a nickname about a highly popular member of his platoon.” But the palace had no good explanation for why Harry introduced another cadet in the video by saying, “It’s Dan the Man. Fuck me, you look like a raghead.”

[..]

And Harry sat there beside her, 7,000 miles from home, in the land of rich Californians and Meyer lemons and eucalyptus trees trailing Spanish moss. He had plighted his troth to this unexpected and very beautiful woman; he had hurt his grandmother, and alienated his father and his only brother. He had thought that having Bishop Michael Bruce Curry deliver the homily at his wedding would reverse a thousand years of English racial attitudes, but he had been wrong about that.**He was a combat veteran, a prince, the grandson, great-grandson, and great-great-grandson of English monarchs, and now he was going to have to think up some podcasts.

\n\n\n

The amount of entitlement and privilege on display here by these two is repulsive. I don’t feel bad for either of them - Meghan can rescue chickens the rest of her life, and Harry can spend his days in that garden thinking up the next great podcast.

\n\n

I hope they do well. I really do. Just spare us the details. Please.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/03/20/none-of-this-needed-to-happen/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/03/20/none-of-this-needed-to-happen/", "title": "none of this needed to happen", "date_published": "2021-03-20T17:26:06-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-03-20T17:26:06-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Now that we're hopefully on the way out of the COVID pandemic and people (myself included) are celebrating how awesome these innovative vaccines are and how great it is that we'll be able to go back to the things we've missed, I want to point out that none of this needed to happen. Many countries were able to rapidly contain COVID, including Japan, China, South Korea, Taiwan, Vietnam, Australia, and New Zealand. We're looking back on one of the biggest failures of our government ever, not just at the national level, but also at the state and local level. This means we need to study all the countries that aced the COVID test and learn how they did it.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Now that we're hopefully on the way out of the COVID pandemic and people (myself included) are celebrating how awesome these innovative vaccines are and how great it is that we'll be able to go back to the things we've missed, I want to point out that none of this needed to happen. Many countries were able to rapidly contain COVID, including Japan, China, South Korea, Taiwan, Vietnam, Australia, and New Zealand. We're looking back on one of the biggest failures of our government ever, not just at the national level, but also at the state and local level. This means we need to study all the countries that aced the COVID test and learn how they did it.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/03/18/blue-georgia/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/03/18/blue-georgia/", "title": "Blue Georgia", "date_published": "2021-03-18T00:00:06-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-03-18T00:00:06-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Times they are a changing. Okay, maybe not.

\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Times they are a changing. Okay, maybe not.

\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/03/17/this-is-the-way/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/03/17/this-is-the-way/", "title": "This is the way", "date_published": "2021-03-17T23:27:45-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-03-17T23:27:45-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Star Wars fans in Yakutsk, Russia built a scale model of the Razor Crest ship from The Mandalorian.

\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Star Wars fans in Yakutsk, Russia built a scale model of the Razor Crest ship from The Mandalorian.

\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/03/15/ykk-zippers/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/03/15/ykk-zippers/", "title": "YKK zippers", "date_published": "2021-03-15T15:27:44-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-03-15T15:27:44-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Want to know if something is high quality? Pay attention to the details. For example - I don’t buy anything that doesn’t have YKK zippers.

\n\n

Josh Centers for the The Prepared:

\n\n

A “pro tip” for evaluating the quality of a piece of gear is to look at the small details, such as zippers and stitching. Cheap-minded manufacturers will skimp on those details because most people just don’t notice, and even a cheap component will often last past a basic warranty period, so it’s an easy way to increase profits without losing sales or returns.

If a designer does bother to invest in quality components, that’s a tried-and-true sign that the overall product is better than the competition. Zippers are a classic example when looking at backpacks, clothing, and similar gear. And although there are a few other fine zipper brands out there, the king is YKK Group — to the point that the first thing some gear reviewers look for is the “YKK” branding on the zipper pull tab.

My dad used to do some work for YKK back in the ‘90s, so I wanted to dig deeper into why they’re the king and what makes their zippers so associated with quality.

[...]

YKK Zippers are amazing, because they self-lubricate the more you use them. You’ll notice that other brands of zippers become sticky and gritty over time. Not with YKK… They will feel more smooth, the more you use them.

\n\n\n

I have products that I have been using for the past 25 years that use them. I have never had a YKK zipper fail on me.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Want to know if something is high quality? Pay attention to the details. For example - I don’t buy anything that doesn’t have YKK zippers.

\n\n

Josh Centers for the The Prepared:

\n\n

A “pro tip” for evaluating the quality of a piece of gear is to look at the small details, such as zippers and stitching. Cheap-minded manufacturers will skimp on those details because most people just don’t notice, and even a cheap component will often last past a basic warranty period, so it’s an easy way to increase profits without losing sales or returns.

If a designer does bother to invest in quality components, that’s a tried-and-true sign that the overall product is better than the competition. Zippers are a classic example when looking at backpacks, clothing, and similar gear. And although there are a few other fine zipper brands out there, the king is YKK Group — to the point that the first thing some gear reviewers look for is the “YKK” branding on the zipper pull tab.

My dad used to do some work for YKK back in the ‘90s, so I wanted to dig deeper into why they’re the king and what makes their zippers so associated with quality.

[...]

YKK Zippers are amazing, because they self-lubricate the more you use them. You’ll notice that other brands of zippers become sticky and gritty over time. Not with YKK… They will feel more smooth, the more you use them.

\n\n\n

I have products that I have been using for the past 25 years that use them. I have never had a YKK zipper fail on me.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/03/15/yo-yo-ma-plays-impromptu-cello-concert-at-covid-19-vaccination-clinic/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/03/15/yo-yo-ma-plays-impromptu-cello-concert-at-covid-19-vaccination-clinic/", "title": "Yo-Yo Ma Plays Impromptu Cello Concert at Covid-19 Vaccination Clinic ", "date_published": "2021-03-15T15:13:24-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-03-15T15:13:24-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\n\n

When Ma had first visited the clinic for his first shot, he did so quietly, taking in the surroundings, staff said. But brought his cello when he returned for the second shot.

Staff described how a hush fell across the clinic as Ma began to play. “It was so weird how peaceful the whole building became, just having a little bit of music in the background,” said Leslie Drager, the lead clinical manager for the vaccination site, according to the Washington Post.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\n\n

When Ma had first visited the clinic for his first shot, he did so quietly, taking in the surroundings, staff said. But brought his cello when he returned for the second shot.

Staff described how a hush fell across the clinic as Ma began to play. “It was so weird how peaceful the whole building became, just having a little bit of music in the background,” said Leslie Drager, the lead clinical manager for the vaccination site, according to the Washington Post.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/03/15/a-silly-people/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/03/15/a-silly-people/", "title": "A Silly People", "date_published": "2021-03-15T11:30:35-04:00", "date_modified": "2021-03-15T11:30:35-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\n\n

Well we are the silly people now. You know who doesnt' care that there's a stereo type of a Chinese man in a Dr Suess book? China. All 1.4 billion of them could give a crouching tiger flying fuck. Because they are not a silly people. If anything they are as serious as a prison fight.

Look we all know China does bad stuff. They break promises about Hong Kong autonomy, they put leaders in camps and punish dissent. We don't want to be that. But there has gotta be something between authoratarian government that tells everyone what to do and a representative government that can't do anything.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\n\n

Well we are the silly people now. You know who doesnt' care that there's a stereo type of a Chinese man in a Dr Suess book? China. All 1.4 billion of them could give a crouching tiger flying fuck. Because they are not a silly people. If anything they are as serious as a prison fight.

Look we all know China does bad stuff. They break promises about Hong Kong autonomy, they put leaders in camps and punish dissent. We don't want to be that. But there has gotta be something between authoratarian government that tells everyone what to do and a representative government that can't do anything.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/03/12/tina/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/03/12/tina/", "title": "Tina", "date_published": "2021-03-12T01:49:53-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-03-12T01:49:53-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\nTina an upcoming documentary Tina Turner, with interviews with Angela Bassett, Oprah, Kurt Loder, and Tina Turner herself. Airing March 27th on HBO.

\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\nTina an upcoming documentary Tina Turner, with interviews with Angela Bassett, Oprah, Kurt Loder, and Tina Turner herself. Airing March 27th on HBO.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/03/12/private-schools-have-become-truly-obscene/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/03/12/private-schools-have-become-truly-obscene/", "title": "Private Schools Have Become Truly Obscene", "date_published": "2021-03-12T01:26:09-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-03-12T01:26:09-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

In a just society, there wouldn’t be a need for these expensive schools, or for private wealth to subsidize something as fundamental as an education. We wouldn’t give rich kids and a tiny number of lottery winners an outstanding education while so many poor kids attend failing schools. In a just society, an education wouldn’t be a luxury item.

We have become a country with vanishingly few paths out of poverty, or even out of the working class. We’ve allowed the majority of our public schools to founder, while expensive private schools play an outsize role in determining who gets to claim a coveted spot in the winners’ circle. Many schools for the richest American kids have gates and security guards; the message is you are precious to us. Many schools for the poorest kids have metal detectors and police officers; the message is you are a threat to us.

Public-school education—the specific force that has helped generations of Americans transcend the circumstances of their birth—is profoundly, perhaps irreparably, broken.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

In a just society, there wouldn’t be a need for these expensive schools, or for private wealth to subsidize something as fundamental as an education. We wouldn’t give rich kids and a tiny number of lottery winners an outstanding education while so many poor kids attend failing schools. In a just society, an education wouldn’t be a luxury item.

We have become a country with vanishingly few paths out of poverty, or even out of the working class. We’ve allowed the majority of our public schools to founder, while expensive private schools play an outsize role in determining who gets to claim a coveted spot in the winners’ circle. Many schools for the richest American kids have gates and security guards; the message is you are precious to us. Many schools for the poorest kids have metal detectors and police officers; the message is you are a threat to us.

Public-school education—the specific force that has helped generations of Americans transcend the circumstances of their birth—is profoundly, perhaps irreparably, broken.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/03/02/through-a-nurses-eyes/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/03/02/through-a-nurses-eyes/", "title": "Through a Nurse’s Eyes", "date_published": "2021-03-02T01:01:59-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-03-02T01:01:59-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\n\n

So many Americans have died in hospitals without family by their side, but they were not alone. Nurses brush patients’ teeth, change their catheters and hold their hands in their final moments.

\n\n

The true heroes of this pandemic. Thank your a health care workers when you see them. Wear your mask. Write your senators and representatives to give these nurses and physicians the support they need.

\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\n\n

So many Americans have died in hospitals without family by their side, but they were not alone. Nurses brush patients’ teeth, change their catheters and hold their hands in their final moments.

\n\n

The true heroes of this pandemic. Thank your a health care workers when you see them. Wear your mask. Write your senators and representatives to give these nurses and physicians the support they need.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/02/18/why-are-covid-19-cases-dropping/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/02/18/why-are-covid-19-cases-dropping/", "title": "Why are COVID-19 cases dropping?", "date_published": "2021-02-18T00:23:31-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-02-18T00:23:31-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Derek Thompson in The Atlantic:

\n\n

One month ago, the CDC published the results of more than 20 pandemic forecasting models. Most projected that COVID-19 cases would continue to grow through February, or at least plateau. Instead, COVID-19 is in retreat in America. New daily cases have plunged, and hospitalizations are down almost 50 percent in the past month. This is not an artifact of infrequent testing, since the share of regional daily tests that are coming back positive has declined even more than the number of cases. Some pandemic statistics are foggy, but the current decline of COVID-19 is crystal clear.

What’s behind the change? Americans’ good behavior in the past month has tag-teamed with (mostly) warming weather across the Northern Hemisphere to slow the pandemic’s growth; at the same time, partial immunity and vaccines have reduced the number of viable bodies that would allow the coronavirus to thrive. But the full story is a bit more complex.

\n\n\n

Everyone is looking for a good answer and ignoring the obvious. Sure the vaccine, seasonality, partial immunity are all a contributing factor. However, the easiest explanation tends to be the right one. We don’t need to overthink this. As scientists have said all along - wearing a mask and social distancing is the best defense we have against this pandemic.

\n", "content_html": "

Derek Thompson in The Atlantic:

\n\n

One month ago, the CDC published the results of more than 20 pandemic forecasting models. Most projected that COVID-19 cases would continue to grow through February, or at least plateau. Instead, COVID-19 is in retreat in America. New daily cases have plunged, and hospitalizations are down almost 50 percent in the past month. This is not an artifact of infrequent testing, since the share of regional daily tests that are coming back positive has declined even more than the number of cases. Some pandemic statistics are foggy, but the current decline of COVID-19 is crystal clear.

What’s behind the change? Americans’ good behavior in the past month has tag-teamed with (mostly) warming weather across the Northern Hemisphere to slow the pandemic’s growth; at the same time, partial immunity and vaccines have reduced the number of viable bodies that would allow the coronavirus to thrive. But the full story is a bit more complex.

\n\n\n

Everyone is looking for a good answer and ignoring the obvious. Sure the vaccine, seasonality, partial immunity are all a contributing factor. However, the easiest explanation tends to be the right one. We don’t need to overthink this. As scientists have said all along - wearing a mask and social distancing is the best defense we have against this pandemic.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/02/16/we-are-not-afraid/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/02/16/we-are-not-afraid/", "title": "We are not afraid", "date_published": "2021-02-16T23:58:20-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-02-16T23:58:20-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Volkswagen CEO Deiss is not afraid of an Apple Electric car.

\n\n

Germany’s Volkswagen is not concerned by any Apple plans for a passenger vehicle that could include the iPhone maker’s battery technology, its chief executive Herbert Diess said.

[...]

“The car industry is not a typical tech-sector that you could take over at a single stroke,” Diess was quoted as saying an interview with Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung. “Apple will not manage that overnight,” he added.

While Apple’s plans are not public, Diess said its intentions as such were “logical” because the company had expertise in battderies, software and design, and that it had deep pockets to build on these competencies.

“Still, we are not afraid,” he said.

\n\n\n

Hmm. Where have we heard this before? Lets back track to 2006, a few months before the announcement of the iPhone. Palm CEO Ed Colligan’s remarks:

\n\n

We’ve learned and struggled for a few years here figuring out how to make a decent phone. PC guys are not going to just figure this out. They’re not going to just walk in

\n\n\n

Let us not forget Microsoft CEO on the introduction of the iPhone.

\n\n

$500 fully subsidized? With a plan? I said that is the most expensive phone in the world and doesn’t appeal to business customers because it doesn’t have a keyboard. Which makes it not a very good email machine.

\n\n

We have a video of trail of that one:

\n\n
\n\n\n


\nBoth Palm and Microsoft left the mobile cell phone business soon after.

\n\n

Whatever Apple’s first electric car introduction is, it will probably won’t be the best. That misses the big picture.

\n\n

When Apple enters a market, they rarely have the best product. In many key specs, it is inferior. The very first Apple II computer, it wasn’t the cheapest or the fastest. But it was a completely assembled machine that was well designed and worked out of the box. For the Macintosh, they re-imagined how users interacted with the computer. With the iPhone, they didn’t release a new phone. They released a Unix based pocket computer with a phone app.

\n\n

Apple just does not enter a market, they re-imagine the market place and tilt it to their advantage . Volkswagen CEO Deiss should be afraid. Very afraid.

\n", "content_html": "

Volkswagen CEO Deiss is not afraid of an Apple Electric car.

\n\n

Germany’s Volkswagen is not concerned by any Apple plans for a passenger vehicle that could include the iPhone maker’s battery technology, its chief executive Herbert Diess said.

[...]

“The car industry is not a typical tech-sector that you could take over at a single stroke,” Diess was quoted as saying an interview with Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung. “Apple will not manage that overnight,” he added.

While Apple’s plans are not public, Diess said its intentions as such were “logical” because the company had expertise in battderies, software and design, and that it had deep pockets to build on these competencies.

“Still, we are not afraid,” he said.

\n\n\n

Hmm. Where have we heard this before? Lets back track to 2006, a few months before the announcement of the iPhone. Palm CEO Ed Colligan’s remarks:

\n\n

We’ve learned and struggled for a few years here figuring out how to make a decent phone. PC guys are not going to just figure this out. They’re not going to just walk in

\n\n\n

Let us not forget Microsoft CEO on the introduction of the iPhone.

\n\n

$500 fully subsidized? With a plan? I said that is the most expensive phone in the world and doesn’t appeal to business customers because it doesn’t have a keyboard. Which makes it not a very good email machine.

\n\n

We have a video of trail of that one:

\n\n
\n\n\n


\nBoth Palm and Microsoft left the mobile cell phone business soon after.

\n\n

Whatever Apple’s first electric car introduction is, it will probably won’t be the best. That misses the big picture.

\n\n

When Apple enters a market, they rarely have the best product. In many key specs, it is inferior. The very first Apple II computer, it wasn’t the cheapest or the fastest. But it was a completely assembled machine that was well designed and worked out of the box. For the Macintosh, they re-imagined how users interacted with the computer. With the iPhone, they didn’t release a new phone. They released a Unix based pocket computer with a phone app.

\n\n

Apple just does not enter a market, they re-imagine the market place and tilt it to their advantage . Volkswagen CEO Deiss should be afraid. Very afraid.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/02/16/flipping-red-states/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/02/16/flipping-red-states/", "title": "flipping red states", "date_published": "2021-02-16T23:47:34-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-02-16T23:47:34-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Stacey Abrams & Lauren Groh-Wargo on how they increased Democratic votes in Georgia:

\n\n

Georgians deserved better, so we devised and began executing a 10-year plan to transform Georgia into a battleground state. As the world knows, President Biden won Georgia’s 16 electoral votes in November, and the January runoff elections for two Senate seats secured full congressional control for the Democratic Party. Yet the result wasn’t a miracle or truly a surprise, at least not to us. Years of planning, testing, innovating, sustained investment and organizing yielded the record-breaking results we knew they could and should. The lessons we learned can help other states looking to chart a more competitive future for Democrats and progressives, particularly those in the Sun Belt, where demographic change will precede electoral opportunity.

We realize that many people are thinking about Stacey’s political future, but right now we intend to talk about the unglamorous, tedious, sometimes technical, often contentious work that creates a battleground state. When fully embraced, this work delivers wins — whether or not Donald Trump is on the ballot — as the growth Georgia Democrats have seen in cycle after cycle shows. Even in tough election years, we have witnessed the power of civic engagement on policy issues and increases in Democratic performance. This combination of improvements has also resulted in steady gains in local races and state legislative races, along with the continued narrowing of the statewide loss margin in election after election that finally flipped the state in 2020 and 2021.

The task is hard, the progress can feel slow, and winning sometimes means losing better. In 2012, for example, we prevented the Republicans from gaining a supermajority in the Georgia House of Representatives, which would have allowed them to pass virtually any bill they wanted. We won four seats they had drawn for themselves, and in 2014 we maintained those gains — just holding our ground was a victory.

The steps toward victory are straightforward: understand your weaknesses, organize with your allies, shore up your political infrastructure and focus on the long game. Georgia’s transformation is worth celebrating, and how it came to be is a long and complicated story, which required more than simply energizing a new coterie of voters. What Georgia Democrats and progressives accomplished here — and what is happening in Arizona and North Carolina — can be exported to the rest of the Sun Belt and the Midwest, but only if we understand how we got here.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Stacey Abrams & Lauren Groh-Wargo on how they increased Democratic votes in Georgia:

\n\n

Georgians deserved better, so we devised and began executing a 10-year plan to transform Georgia into a battleground state. As the world knows, President Biden won Georgia’s 16 electoral votes in November, and the January runoff elections for two Senate seats secured full congressional control for the Democratic Party. Yet the result wasn’t a miracle or truly a surprise, at least not to us. Years of planning, testing, innovating, sustained investment and organizing yielded the record-breaking results we knew they could and should. The lessons we learned can help other states looking to chart a more competitive future for Democrats and progressives, particularly those in the Sun Belt, where demographic change will precede electoral opportunity.

We realize that many people are thinking about Stacey’s political future, but right now we intend to talk about the unglamorous, tedious, sometimes technical, often contentious work that creates a battleground state. When fully embraced, this work delivers wins — whether or not Donald Trump is on the ballot — as the growth Georgia Democrats have seen in cycle after cycle shows. Even in tough election years, we have witnessed the power of civic engagement on policy issues and increases in Democratic performance. This combination of improvements has also resulted in steady gains in local races and state legislative races, along with the continued narrowing of the statewide loss margin in election after election that finally flipped the state in 2020 and 2021.

The task is hard, the progress can feel slow, and winning sometimes means losing better. In 2012, for example, we prevented the Republicans from gaining a supermajority in the Georgia House of Representatives, which would have allowed them to pass virtually any bill they wanted. We won four seats they had drawn for themselves, and in 2014 we maintained those gains — just holding our ground was a victory.

The steps toward victory are straightforward: understand your weaknesses, organize with your allies, shore up your political infrastructure and focus on the long game. Georgia’s transformation is worth celebrating, and how it came to be is a long and complicated story, which required more than simply energizing a new coterie of voters. What Georgia Democrats and progressives accomplished here — and what is happening in Arizona and North Carolina — can be exported to the rest of the Sun Belt and the Midwest, but only if we understand how we got here.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/02/13/trump-acquitted/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/02/13/trump-acquitted/", "title": "Trump Acquitted", "date_published": "2021-02-13T02:32:32-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-02-13T02:32:32-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Former president Donald Trump was acquitted Saturday of inciting the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol, becoming the first president in U.S. history to face a second impeachment trial — and surviving it in part because of his continuing hold on the Republican Party despite his electoral defeat in November.

That grip appeared to loosen slightly during the vote Saturday afternoon, when seven Republicans crossed party lines to vote for conviction — a sign of the rift the Capitol siege has caused within GOP ranks and the desire by some in the party to move on from Trump. Still, the 57-to-43 vote, in which all Democrats and two independents voted against the president, fell far short of the two-thirds required to convict.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Former president Donald Trump was acquitted Saturday of inciting the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol, becoming the first president in U.S. history to face a second impeachment trial — and surviving it in part because of his continuing hold on the Republican Party despite his electoral defeat in November.

That grip appeared to loosen slightly during the vote Saturday afternoon, when seven Republicans crossed party lines to vote for conviction — a sign of the rift the Capitol siege has caused within GOP ranks and the desire by some in the party to move on from Trump. Still, the 57-to-43 vote, in which all Democrats and two independents voted against the president, fell far short of the two-thirds required to convict.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/02/12/what-i-think-of-bitcoin/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/02/12/what-i-think-of-bitcoin/", "title": "What I Think of Bitcoin", "date_published": "2021-02-12T02:32:53-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-02-12T02:32:53-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Ray Dalio channels my thoughts on bitcoin:

\n\n

As an extension of Bitcoin¹ being digital are the questions of how private it is and what the government will allow and not allow it to be. Regarding privacy, it appears that Bitcoin will unlikely be as private as some people surmise. It is, after all, a public ledger and a material amount of Bitcoin is held in a non-private manner. If the government (and perhaps hackers) want to see who has what, I doubt that privacy could be protected. Also, it appears to me that if the government wanted to get rid of its use, most of those who are using it wouldn’t be able to use it so the demand for it would plunge. Rather than it being far-fetched that the government would invade the privacy and/or prevent the use of Bitcoin (and its competitors) it seems to me that the more successful it is the more likely these possibilities would be. Starting with the formation of the first central bank (the Bank of England in 1694), for good logical reasons governments wanted control over money and they protected their abilities to have the only monies and credit within their borders. When I a) put myself in the shoes of government officials, b) see their actions, and c) hear what they say, it is hard for me to imagine that they would allow Bitcoin (or gold) to be an obviously better choice than the money and credit that they are producing. I suspect that Bitcoin’s biggest risk is being successful, because if it’s successful, the government will try to kill it and they have a lot of power to succeed.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Ray Dalio channels my thoughts on bitcoin:

\n\n

As an extension of Bitcoin¹ being digital are the questions of how private it is and what the government will allow and not allow it to be. Regarding privacy, it appears that Bitcoin will unlikely be as private as some people surmise. It is, after all, a public ledger and a material amount of Bitcoin is held in a non-private manner. If the government (and perhaps hackers) want to see who has what, I doubt that privacy could be protected. Also, it appears to me that if the government wanted to get rid of its use, most of those who are using it wouldn’t be able to use it so the demand for it would plunge. Rather than it being far-fetched that the government would invade the privacy and/or prevent the use of Bitcoin (and its competitors) it seems to me that the more successful it is the more likely these possibilities would be. Starting with the formation of the first central bank (the Bank of England in 1694), for good logical reasons governments wanted control over money and they protected their abilities to have the only monies and credit within their borders. When I a) put myself in the shoes of government officials, b) see their actions, and c) hear what they say, it is hard for me to imagine that they would allow Bitcoin (or gold) to be an obviously better choice than the money and credit that they are producing. I suspect that Bitcoin’s biggest risk is being successful, because if it’s successful, the government will try to kill it and they have a lot of power to succeed.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/02/12/the-house-that-tim-cook-built/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/02/12/the-house-that-tim-cook-built/", "title": "The House that Tim Cook Built", "date_published": "2021-02-12T01:56:10-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-02-12T01:56:10-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

John Sculley was the Pepsi guy.
\nGil Amelio was the leaking ship.
\nSteve Jobs was the visionary.
\nTim Cook is the builder.

\n\n

Apple’s turnaround in the ensuing years has generally been attributed to Jobs’s product genius, beginning with the candy-colored iMacs that turned once-beige appliances into objets d’office. But equally important in Apple’s transformation into the economic and cultural force it is today was Cook’s ability to manufacture those computers, and the iPods, iPhones, and iPads that followed, in massive quantities. For that he adopted strategies similar to those used by HP, Compaq, and Dell, companies that were derided by Jobs but had helped usher in an era of outsourced manufacturing and made-to-order products.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

John Sculley was the Pepsi guy.
\nGil Amelio was the leaking ship.
\nSteve Jobs was the visionary.
\nTim Cook is the builder.

\n\n

Apple’s turnaround in the ensuing years has generally been attributed to Jobs’s product genius, beginning with the candy-colored iMacs that turned once-beige appliances into objets d’office. But equally important in Apple’s transformation into the economic and cultural force it is today was Cook’s ability to manufacture those computers, and the iPods, iPhones, and iPads that followed, in massive quantities. For that he adopted strategies similar to those used by HP, Compaq, and Dell, companies that were derided by Jobs but had helped usher in an era of outsourced manufacturing and made-to-order products.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/02/12/catching-the-virus-from-surfaces/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/02/12/catching-the-virus-from-surfaces/", "title": "Catching the virus from surfaces?", "date_published": "2021-02-12T01:44:23-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-02-12T01:44:23-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Derek Thompson, in The Atlantic:

\n\n

Six months ago, I wrote that Americans had embraced a backwards view of the coronavirus. Too many people imagined the fight against COVID-19 as a land war to be waged with sudsy hand-to-hand combat against grimy surfaces. Meanwhile, the science suggested we should be focused on an aerial strategy. The virus spreads most efficiently through the air via the spittle spray that we emit when we exhale — especially when we cough, talk loudly, sing, or exercise. I called this conceptual error, and the bonanza of pointless power-scrubbing that it had inspired, “hygiene theater.”

My chief inspiration was an essay in the medical journal The Lancet called “Exaggerated Risk of Transmission of COVID-19 by Fomites.” (Fomites is a medical term for objects and surfaces that can pass along an infectious pathogen.) Its author was Emanuel Goldman, a microbiology professor at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School. At the time, Goldman was a lonely voice in the wilderness. Lysol wipes were flying off the shelves, and it was controversial to suggest that this behavior was anything less than saintly and salutary. Other journals had rejected Goldman’s short essay, and some were still publishing frightening research about the possible danger of our groceries and Amazon packages.

But half a year later, Goldman looks oracular. Since last spring, the CDC has expanded its guidance to clarify that the coronavirus “spreads less commonly through contact with contaminated surfaces.” In the past month, the leading scientific journal Nature published both a long analysis and a sharp editorial reiterating Goldman’s thesis. “A year into the pandemic, the evidence is now clear,” the editorial begins. “Catching the virus from surfaces — although plausible — seems to be rare.”

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Derek Thompson, in The Atlantic:

\n\n

Six months ago, I wrote that Americans had embraced a backwards view of the coronavirus. Too many people imagined the fight against COVID-19 as a land war to be waged with sudsy hand-to-hand combat against grimy surfaces. Meanwhile, the science suggested we should be focused on an aerial strategy. The virus spreads most efficiently through the air via the spittle spray that we emit when we exhale — especially when we cough, talk loudly, sing, or exercise. I called this conceptual error, and the bonanza of pointless power-scrubbing that it had inspired, “hygiene theater.”

My chief inspiration was an essay in the medical journal The Lancet called “Exaggerated Risk of Transmission of COVID-19 by Fomites.” (Fomites is a medical term for objects and surfaces that can pass along an infectious pathogen.) Its author was Emanuel Goldman, a microbiology professor at Rutgers New Jersey Medical School. At the time, Goldman was a lonely voice in the wilderness. Lysol wipes were flying off the shelves, and it was controversial to suggest that this behavior was anything less than saintly and salutary. Other journals had rejected Goldman’s short essay, and some were still publishing frightening research about the possible danger of our groceries and Amazon packages.

But half a year later, Goldman looks oracular. Since last spring, the CDC has expanded its guidance to clarify that the coronavirus “spreads less commonly through contact with contaminated surfaces.” In the past month, the leading scientific journal Nature published both a long analysis and a sharp editorial reiterating Goldman’s thesis. “A year into the pandemic, the evidence is now clear,” the editorial begins. “Catching the virus from surfaces — although plausible — seems to be rare.”

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/02/12/folded-map-project/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/02/12/folded-map-project/", "title": "Folded Map Project", "date_published": "2021-02-12T01:28:58-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-02-12T01:28:58-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Tonika Johnson’s Folded Map Project explores the differences and similarities across this boundary by comparing an addresses on the North Side with the corresponding addresses on the South Side of Chicago.

\n\n

In an interview by Paulette Beete for Colossal:

\n\n

The ultimate point that I was trying to get across was that Chicago’s history of segregation is still with all of us today. I wanted to prove this point for people who might not make that connection [between] the disparity that exists and the history behind it. I wanted the project to be an entree into expanding people’s minds of Chicago’s history of segregation through thinking about their own lived experience. I really appreciated being able to do that through art, through photos and portraits and video because I wasn’t blaming people who live on these different sides. I was offering them insight into the larger question of, “did you really choose this? Does our segregation reflect how we want to interact? And if it doesn’t, then you have to question why is it this way?”

There is this narrative that people think [Chicagoans] don’t interact. But we do, a lot, especially through art. That’s how we know the city is segregated. (laughing) We know that we’re disrupting this segregation when we come together. And that’s why I think art is such a beautiful common denominator.

\n\n\n

This project is a reminder of the economic inequality and the effects of America’s historical segregation policies far reaching effects. Which are still on display, for anyone who cares to notice.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Tonika Johnson’s Folded Map Project explores the differences and similarities across this boundary by comparing an addresses on the North Side with the corresponding addresses on the South Side of Chicago.

\n\n

In an interview by Paulette Beete for Colossal:

\n\n

The ultimate point that I was trying to get across was that Chicago’s history of segregation is still with all of us today. I wanted to prove this point for people who might not make that connection [between] the disparity that exists and the history behind it. I wanted the project to be an entree into expanding people’s minds of Chicago’s history of segregation through thinking about their own lived experience. I really appreciated being able to do that through art, through photos and portraits and video because I wasn’t blaming people who live on these different sides. I was offering them insight into the larger question of, “did you really choose this? Does our segregation reflect how we want to interact? And if it doesn’t, then you have to question why is it this way?”

There is this narrative that people think [Chicagoans] don’t interact. But we do, a lot, especially through art. That’s how we know the city is segregated. (laughing) We know that we’re disrupting this segregation when we come together. And that’s why I think art is such a beautiful common denominator.

\n\n\n

This project is a reminder of the economic inequality and the effects of America’s historical segregation policies far reaching effects. Which are still on display, for anyone who cares to notice.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/02/07/apple-and-hyundai-kia/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/02/07/apple-and-hyundai-kia/", "title": "Apple and Hyundai-Kia ", "date_published": "2021-02-07T03:33:49-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-02-07T03:33:49-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Phil LeBeau and Meghan Reeder over at CNBC:

\n\n

After years of speculation that it will eventually get into the auto business with its own vehicle, Apple is close to finalizing a deal with Hyundai-Kia to manufacture an Apple-branded autonomous electric vehicle at the Kia assembly plant in West Point, Georgia according to multiple sources who briefed CNBC on the plan.

The so-called “Apple Car,” which is being developed by a team at Apple, is tentatively scheduled to go into production in 2024, though people familiar with the talks between Apple and Hyundai-Kia say the eventual rollout could be pushed back.

[…]

Sources familiar with Apple’s interest in working with Hyundai say the tech giant wants to build the “Apple Car” in North America with an established automaker willing to allow Apple to control the software and hardware that will go into the vehicle.

In other words, this will be an “Apple Car,” not a Kia model featuring Apple software.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Phil LeBeau and Meghan Reeder over at CNBC:

\n\n

After years of speculation that it will eventually get into the auto business with its own vehicle, Apple is close to finalizing a deal with Hyundai-Kia to manufacture an Apple-branded autonomous electric vehicle at the Kia assembly plant in West Point, Georgia according to multiple sources who briefed CNBC on the plan.

The so-called “Apple Car,” which is being developed by a team at Apple, is tentatively scheduled to go into production in 2024, though people familiar with the talks between Apple and Hyundai-Kia say the eventual rollout could be pushed back.

[…]

Sources familiar with Apple’s interest in working with Hyundai say the tech giant wants to build the “Apple Car” in North America with an established automaker willing to allow Apple to control the software and hardware that will go into the vehicle.

In other words, this will be an “Apple Car,” not a Kia model featuring Apple software.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/02/07/prince-super-bowl-xli/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/02/07/prince-super-bowl-xli/", "title": "Prince - Super Bowl XLI", "date_published": "2021-02-07T02:49:13-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-02-07T02:49:13-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

The best Super Bowl halftime performance is Prince’s performance during Super Bowl XLI in 2007. Anil Dash’s excellent write-up:

\n\n

Prince’s halftime show wasn’t just a fun diversion from a football game; it was a deeply personal statement on race, agency & artistry from an artist determined to cement his long-term legacy. And he did it on his own terms, as always.

Opening with the stomp-stomp-clap of Queen’s “We Will Rock You”, Prince went for crowd participation right from the start, with a nod to one of the biggest stadium anthems of all time — and notably, is one of the songs in the set that he never performed any time before or after. Indeed, though his 1992 song “3 Chains O’ Gold” was clearly a pastiche of the then-rejuvenated “Bohemian Rhapsody”, Prince had rarely, if ever, played any Queen covers at all in his thousands of live shows.

But with that arena-rock staple, Prince was signaling that he was going to win over a football crowd. He launched straight into “Let’s Go Crazy” at the top of the set. As one of the best album- and concert-opening songs of all time, this was a perfect choice. Different from any other Super Bowl performer before or since, Prince actually does a call-and-response section in the song, emphasizing that this is live, and connecting him explicitly to a timeless Black music tradition.

\n\n\n

Watch the full show here.

\n\n
\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

The best Super Bowl halftime performance is Prince’s performance during Super Bowl XLI in 2007. Anil Dash’s excellent write-up:

\n\n

Prince’s halftime show wasn’t just a fun diversion from a football game; it was a deeply personal statement on race, agency & artistry from an artist determined to cement his long-term legacy. And he did it on his own terms, as always.

Opening with the stomp-stomp-clap of Queen’s “We Will Rock You”, Prince went for crowd participation right from the start, with a nod to one of the biggest stadium anthems of all time — and notably, is one of the songs in the set that he never performed any time before or after. Indeed, though his 1992 song “3 Chains O’ Gold” was clearly a pastiche of the then-rejuvenated “Bohemian Rhapsody”, Prince had rarely, if ever, played any Queen covers at all in his thousands of live shows.

But with that arena-rock staple, Prince was signaling that he was going to win over a football crowd. He launched straight into “Let’s Go Crazy” at the top of the set. As one of the best album- and concert-opening songs of all time, this was a perfect choice. Different from any other Super Bowl performer before or since, Prince actually does a call-and-response section in the song, emphasizing that this is live, and connecting him explicitly to a timeless Black music tradition.

\n\n\n

Watch the full show here.

\n\n
\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/01/30/the-slabs/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/01/30/the-slabs/", "title": "The Slabs", "date_published": "2021-01-30T22:44:16-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-01-30T22:44:16-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Danny MacAskill visits the Isle of Skye with his mountain bike to find an impossibly steep route down the Dubh Slabs.

\n\n

That was pretty scary.

\n\n

I’ll say.

\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Danny MacAskill visits the Isle of Skye with his mountain bike to find an impossibly steep route down the Dubh Slabs.

\n\n

That was pretty scary.

\n\n

I’ll say.

\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/01/24/hello-douchebags/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/01/24/hello-douchebags/", "title": "Hello, Douchebags!", "date_published": "2021-01-24T23:57:34-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-01-24T23:57:34-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Though the latest episode of “Real Time” was the first of the Joe Biden era, Bill Maher used his “New Rules” segment to talk not about the newly minted administration, but instead about Republicans.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\n\n

On Josh Hawley:

\n\n

Oh, he’s an up-and-comer. Washington insider says he’s among 2021’s most punchable faces. Handsome, youthful and vigorous, he’s the far-right JFK with a little dash of KKK. And as the son of a wealthy banker and a graduate of Stanford, Yale and a private prep school, Josh knows what he hates most in this world: elites. Loathsome and transparently ambitious, Josh was the first editor to formally choose Trump’s baseless election fraud conspiracy over his pledge to uphold the Constitution. But before you say he’s anti-democratic, Josh wants you to know that he’s just asking questions. Questions like, ‘Why does the winner of an election always have to be the guy who gets the most votes?'

\n\n

On Colorado congresswoman Lauren Boebert:

\n\n

Not to be outdone in the area of hating government from the inside, freshmen Colorado rep and high school dropout Lauren Boebert is some of you may have already thought of — if you ever thought — ‘What would happen if Michelle Bachman smoked bath salts?’ This sassy gal was taking her hoops out to fight the libtards and she, and she wants everyone to know she has exactly one issue: guns. Spoiler alert, she likes them. She is from a town named Rifle and owns a restaurant called Shooters, where the waitstaff, no kidding, are encouraged to carry loaded weapons on the job. My suggestion if you eat there, make sure you tip at least 20%! I ate there once, I asked the waiter ‘How fresh is the fish?’ He said ‘I don’t know, you feel lucky, punk?'

\n\n

Georgia Representative Marjorie Taylor Green, a QAnon supporter:

\n\n

The true mayor of crazy town, and everyone’s favorite Karen. The congresswoman who makes most people say, ‘How is she not a teacher from Florida who f—s her students?’ I don’t know, but holy s— is this lady crazy? She does not listen to lobbyists and special interests. No, she listens to microwaves. I’m talking dogs. She is an all-in QAnon believer who thinks science and reason are a conspiracy to trick people into thinking. Reagan saw a shining city on a hill, this chick sees spiders on her arms. Move over AOC, say hello to WTF.

\n\n

Yea - the newest members of the Republican Class of 2021. Sit tight, its going to be a long 4 years.

\n", "content_html": "

Though the latest episode of “Real Time” was the first of the Joe Biden era, Bill Maher used his “New Rules” segment to talk not about the newly minted administration, but instead about Republicans.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\n\n

On Josh Hawley:

\n\n

Oh, he’s an up-and-comer. Washington insider says he’s among 2021’s most punchable faces. Handsome, youthful and vigorous, he’s the far-right JFK with a little dash of KKK. And as the son of a wealthy banker and a graduate of Stanford, Yale and a private prep school, Josh knows what he hates most in this world: elites. Loathsome and transparently ambitious, Josh was the first editor to formally choose Trump’s baseless election fraud conspiracy over his pledge to uphold the Constitution. But before you say he’s anti-democratic, Josh wants you to know that he’s just asking questions. Questions like, ‘Why does the winner of an election always have to be the guy who gets the most votes?'

\n\n

On Colorado congresswoman Lauren Boebert:

\n\n

Not to be outdone in the area of hating government from the inside, freshmen Colorado rep and high school dropout Lauren Boebert is some of you may have already thought of — if you ever thought — ‘What would happen if Michelle Bachman smoked bath salts?’ This sassy gal was taking her hoops out to fight the libtards and she, and she wants everyone to know she has exactly one issue: guns. Spoiler alert, she likes them. She is from a town named Rifle and owns a restaurant called Shooters, where the waitstaff, no kidding, are encouraged to carry loaded weapons on the job. My suggestion if you eat there, make sure you tip at least 20%! I ate there once, I asked the waiter ‘How fresh is the fish?’ He said ‘I don’t know, you feel lucky, punk?'

\n\n

Georgia Representative Marjorie Taylor Green, a QAnon supporter:

\n\n

The true mayor of crazy town, and everyone’s favorite Karen. The congresswoman who makes most people say, ‘How is she not a teacher from Florida who f—s her students?’ I don’t know, but holy s— is this lady crazy? She does not listen to lobbyists and special interests. No, she listens to microwaves. I’m talking dogs. She is an all-in QAnon believer who thinks science and reason are a conspiracy to trick people into thinking. Reagan saw a shining city on a hill, this chick sees spiders on her arms. Move over AOC, say hello to WTF.

\n\n

Yea - the newest members of the Republican Class of 2021. Sit tight, its going to be a long 4 years.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/01/22/intel-should-be-worried/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/01/22/intel-should-be-worried/", "title": "Intel should be worried", "date_published": "2021-01-22T05:02:48-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-01-22T05:02:48-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n

\nTom Warren reporting in The Verge:

\n\n

\"We have to deliver better products to the PC ecosystem than any possible thing that a lifestyle company in Cupertino” makes, Gelsinger reportedly told Intel employees. “We have to be that good, in the future.\"

\n\n\n

The Apple M1 chip is out. It has proven to be faster than Intel’s best - both in performance and power consumption. To make matters worse, Apple has already transitioned its OS and vendors are quickly porting their Intel based software over to the new architecture.

\n\n

Traditionally, Intel would have some time to play catchup as the software needs to be upgraded to the new silicon. Thanks to Apple’s Rosetta technology, Intel native apps run without modification on Apple silicon - with little or no performance hit. Lets not forget, this is Apple fourth transition (68K -> PowerPC -> Intel -> Apple Silicon). They have successfully done it three times before, and the fourth is already proving to be no different.

\n\n

Intel’s new CEO Pat Gelsinger seems awfully arrogant calling Apple a “life style company.” The introduction of Apples ARM silicon in their computer line is as industry shaking as the release of the iPhone. Just ask how things turned out for Nokia, RIM, Microsoft and Palm.

\n\n

Intel shouldn’t be making wise cracks. They should be scared to death. Pat Gelsinger should be paranoid.

\n\n

Don’t be this guy:

\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n

\nTom Warren reporting in The Verge:

\n\n

\"We have to deliver better products to the PC ecosystem than any possible thing that a lifestyle company in Cupertino” makes, Gelsinger reportedly told Intel employees. “We have to be that good, in the future.\"

\n\n\n

The Apple M1 chip is out. It has proven to be faster than Intel’s best - both in performance and power consumption. To make matters worse, Apple has already transitioned its OS and vendors are quickly porting their Intel based software over to the new architecture.

\n\n

Traditionally, Intel would have some time to play catchup as the software needs to be upgraded to the new silicon. Thanks to Apple’s Rosetta technology, Intel native apps run without modification on Apple silicon - with little or no performance hit. Lets not forget, this is Apple fourth transition (68K -> PowerPC -> Intel -> Apple Silicon). They have successfully done it three times before, and the fourth is already proving to be no different.

\n\n

Intel’s new CEO Pat Gelsinger seems awfully arrogant calling Apple a “life style company.” The introduction of Apples ARM silicon in their computer line is as industry shaking as the release of the iPhone. Just ask how things turned out for Nokia, RIM, Microsoft and Palm.

\n\n

Intel shouldn’t be making wise cracks. They should be scared to death. Pat Gelsinger should be paranoid.

\n\n

Don’t be this guy:

\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/01/21/new-adminstration-new-website/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/01/21/new-adminstration-new-website/", "title": "New administration, new website.", "date_published": "2021-01-21T01:51:14-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-01-21T01:51:14-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Change is everywhere. Even the new The White House website is more inclusive, focused and hopeful.

\n\n

As the great American poet Bob Dylan once said - The Times They Are A-Changin'. This time for the better.

\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Change is everywhere. Even the new The White House website is more inclusive, focused and hopeful.

\n\n

As the great American poet Bob Dylan once said - The Times They Are A-Changin'. This time for the better.

\n\n\n\n\n\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/01/21/wake-up-call-for-republicans/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/01/21/wake-up-call-for-republicans/", "title": "Wake up call for Republicans", "date_published": "2021-01-21T01:24:27-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-01-21T01:24:27-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Matthew Cook in a plea for Republicans and Trump supporters to wake-up.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\n\n

This is a wake-up call for Republicans. America elected Joe Biden by over 7 million votes, and you’re confused because you didn’t see us flock to his rallies and cheer his smackdowns like we were at a pro wrestling event during a global pandemic. We don’t wear matching hats or have “no more malarkey” flags waving from the backs of our trucks. Do you know why? Because Biden is not our tribal warlord. We believe the job of a U.S. President is to represent more than one interest group. That’s why 81 million of us turned out to stop a narcissistic personality cult that embodies all seven of the deadly sins — most of all pride, which you’ve taken to levels of blasphemy, claiming your political leaders are handpicked by Jesus Christ.

This country is called the United States and we have multiple converging crises that need adult supervision but we are being distracted trying to get control over a critical mass of you who no longer believe in reality.

\n\n\n

This took a psychotic narcissistic President, with what is essentially a state run media outlet in Fox, two of the largest tech companies (Facebook & Twitter) in a perfect storm with Republican leaders such as Ted Cruz & Josh Hawley 4 years to spread lies and disinformation that eventually led to an insurrection by American citizens. I fear it’s going to take a lot more time to bring the Party of Lincoln back to its roots.

\n\n

That is if the party survives at all.

\n", "content_html": "

Matthew Cook in a plea for Republicans and Trump supporters to wake-up.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\n\n

This is a wake-up call for Republicans. America elected Joe Biden by over 7 million votes, and you’re confused because you didn’t see us flock to his rallies and cheer his smackdowns like we were at a pro wrestling event during a global pandemic. We don’t wear matching hats or have “no more malarkey” flags waving from the backs of our trucks. Do you know why? Because Biden is not our tribal warlord. We believe the job of a U.S. President is to represent more than one interest group. That’s why 81 million of us turned out to stop a narcissistic personality cult that embodies all seven of the deadly sins — most of all pride, which you’ve taken to levels of blasphemy, claiming your political leaders are handpicked by Jesus Christ.

This country is called the United States and we have multiple converging crises that need adult supervision but we are being distracted trying to get control over a critical mass of you who no longer believe in reality.

\n\n\n

This took a psychotic narcissistic President, with what is essentially a state run media outlet in Fox, two of the largest tech companies (Facebook & Twitter) in a perfect storm with Republican leaders such as Ted Cruz & Josh Hawley 4 years to spread lies and disinformation that eventually led to an insurrection by American citizens. I fear it’s going to take a lot more time to bring the Party of Lincoln back to its roots.

\n\n

That is if the party survives at all.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/01/21/madam-vice-president/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/01/21/madam-vice-president/", "title": "Kamala Harris - Madam Vice President", "date_published": "2021-01-21T01:15:15-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-01-21T01:15:15-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

The first Black Vice President. The first person of South Asian descent to be Vice President. The first woman to hold that office. This is the look of political power in the future. There is a lot to celebrate today.

\n\n

To all the right wingers - get used to it.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

The first Black Vice President. The first person of South Asian descent to be Vice President. The first woman to hold that office. This is the look of political power in the future. There is a lot to celebrate today.

\n\n

To all the right wingers - get used to it.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/01/20/americas-white-supremacist-president/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/01/20/americas-white-supremacist-president/", "title": "America's White Supremacist President", "date_published": "2021-01-20T23:54:34-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-01-20T23:54:34-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

It was popular, at the time of Donald Trump’s ascension, to stand on the thinnest of reeds in order to avoid stating the obvious. It was said that the Trump presidency was the fruit of “economic anxiety,” of trigger warnings and the push for trans rights. We were told that it was wrong to call Trump a white supremacist, because he had merely “drawn upon their themes.”

One hopes that after four years of brown children in cages; of attempts to invalidate the will of Black voters in Philadelphia, Atlanta, and Detroit; of hearing Trump tell congresswomen of color to go back where they came from; of claims that Joe Biden would turn Minnesota into “a refugee camp”; of his constant invocations of “the Chinese virus,” we can now safely conclude that Trump believes in a world where white people are — or should be — on top. It is still deeply challenging for so many people to accept the reality of what has happened — that a country has been captured by the worst of its history, while millions of Americans cheered this on.

\n\n\n

The worst president the United States has ever had. We can add insurrectionist to that long list. He will go screaming, kicking, yelling, pouting, screaming. But he is out. And it wasn’t the courts - it was the American voters.

\n\n

I am regaining faith in this country. It’s going to be a long journey, and as with any journey it begins with a first step. That step was taken today.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

It was popular, at the time of Donald Trump’s ascension, to stand on the thinnest of reeds in order to avoid stating the obvious. It was said that the Trump presidency was the fruit of “economic anxiety,” of trigger warnings and the push for trans rights. We were told that it was wrong to call Trump a white supremacist, because he had merely “drawn upon their themes.”

One hopes that after four years of brown children in cages; of attempts to invalidate the will of Black voters in Philadelphia, Atlanta, and Detroit; of hearing Trump tell congresswomen of color to go back where they came from; of claims that Joe Biden would turn Minnesota into “a refugee camp”; of his constant invocations of “the Chinese virus,” we can now safely conclude that Trump believes in a world where white people are — or should be — on top. It is still deeply challenging for so many people to accept the reality of what has happened — that a country has been captured by the worst of its history, while millions of Americans cheered this on.

\n\n\n

The worst president the United States has ever had. We can add insurrectionist to that long list. He will go screaming, kicking, yelling, pouting, screaming. But he is out. And it wasn’t the courts - it was the American voters.

\n\n

I am regaining faith in this country. It’s going to be a long journey, and as with any journey it begins with a first step. That step was taken today.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/01/20/the-week-after-twitter-banned-trump/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/01/20/the-week-after-twitter-banned-trump/", "title": "The week after Twitter banned Trump", "date_published": "2021-01-20T02:15:41-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-01-20T02:15:41-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

The Washington Post:

\n\n

Online misinformation about election fraud plunged 73 percent after several social media sites suspended President Trump and key allies last week, research firm Zignal Labs has found, underscoring the power of tech companies to limit the falsehoods poisoning public debate when they act aggressively.

The new research by the San Francisco-based analytics firm reported that conversations about election fraud dropped from 2.5 million mentions to 688,000 mentions across several social media sites in the week after Trump was banned from Twitter.

\n\n\n

Imagine if this was done half way through the Trump Presidency.

\n", "content_html": "

The Washington Post:

\n\n

Online misinformation about election fraud plunged 73 percent after several social media sites suspended President Trump and key allies last week, research firm Zignal Labs has found, underscoring the power of tech companies to limit the falsehoods poisoning public debate when they act aggressively.

The new research by the San Francisco-based analytics firm reported that conversations about election fraud dropped from 2.5 million mentions to 688,000 mentions across several social media sites in the week after Trump was banned from Twitter.

\n\n\n

Imagine if this was done half way through the Trump Presidency.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/01/19/this-transfer-of-power-wasnt-peaceful/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/01/19/this-transfer-of-power-wasnt-peaceful/", "title": "This transfer of Power wasn't peaceful", "date_published": "2021-01-19T10:00:26-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-01-19T10:00:26-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

74% of Republicans believe Joe Biden didn't win the Presidency legitimately. Now this is the country the Biden administration and Democratic Senate and House are tasked with governing. A country that requires 25,000 armed troops to keep the peace on inauguration day.

\n\n\n\n\n
\n\n\n


\n\n

Thanks to Donal Trump and his enablers - the US can no longer claim to be an example a peaceful transition of power. Good news is, this is Donald Trump’s last day as President of the United States.

\n", "content_html": "

74% of Republicans believe Joe Biden didn't win the Presidency legitimately. Now this is the country the Biden administration and Democratic Senate and House are tasked with governing. A country that requires 25,000 armed troops to keep the peace on inauguration day.

\n\n\n\n\n
\n\n\n


\n\n

Thanks to Donal Trump and his enablers - the US can no longer claim to be an example a peaceful transition of power. Good news is, this is Donald Trump’s last day as President of the United States.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/01/17/the-are-trumpers/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/01/17/the-are-trumpers/", "title": "These are Trumpers", "date_published": "2021-01-17T01:45:55-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-01-17T01:45:55-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Jordan Klepper leads a focus group to understand the minds of Trumpers. Well, at least we can all agree with the final conclusion.

\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Jordan Klepper leads a focus group to understand the minds of Trumpers. Well, at least we can all agree with the final conclusion.

\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/01/16/stop-giving-kellyanne-conway-a-platform/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/01/16/stop-giving-kellyanne-conway-a-platform/", "title": "Stop giving Kellyanne Conway a platform", "date_published": "2021-01-16T14:46:20-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-01-16T14:46:20-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Kellyanne Conway was an enabler for Donal Trump. She will be forever remembered for coining the term ‘alternative facts’. Even when given a platform to admit fault and build a path forward - she lies, spins, deflects.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\nStop giving Kellyanne Conway a platform to revise history.

\n", "content_html": "

Kellyanne Conway was an enabler for Donal Trump. She will be forever remembered for coining the term ‘alternative facts’. Even when given a platform to admit fault and build a path forward - she lies, spins, deflects.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\nStop giving Kellyanne Conway a platform to revise history.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/01/16/dr-brian-may/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/01/16/dr-brian-may/", "title": "Dr. Brian May", "date_published": "2021-01-16T01:00:18-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-01-16T01:00:18-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\nAs a member of Queen, Brian May became regarded as a virtuoso musician and he was identified with a distinctive sound created through his layered guitar work, often using a home-built electric guitar called the Red Special. May wrote numerous hits for Queen, including “We Will Rock You”, “I Want It All”, “Fat Bottomed Girls”, “Flash”, “Hammer to Fall”, “Save Me”, “Who Wants to Live Forever”, “Too Much Love Will Kill You”, and “The Show Must Go On”.

\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\nAs a member of Queen, Brian May became regarded as a virtuoso musician and he was identified with a distinctive sound created through his layered guitar work, often using a home-built electric guitar called the Red Special. May wrote numerous hits for Queen, including “We Will Rock You”, “I Want It All”, “Fat Bottomed Girls”, “Flash”, “Hammer to Fall”, “Save Me”, “Who Wants to Live Forever”, “Too Much Love Will Kill You”, and “The Show Must Go On”.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/01/16/a-truth-reckoning/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/01/16/a-truth-reckoning/", "title": "A truth reckoning", "date_published": "2021-01-16T00:40:15-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-01-16T00:40:15-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Randall Lane in Forbes:

\n\n

Simple: Don’t let the chronic liars cash in on their dishonesty. Press secretaries like Joe Lockhart, Ari Fleischer and Jay Carney, who left the White House with their reputations in various stages of intact, made millions taking their skills — and credibility — to corporate America. Trump’s liars don’t merit that same golden parachute. Let it be known to the business world: Hire any of Trump’s fellow fabulists above, and Forbes will assume that everything your company or firm talks about is a lie. We’re going to scrutinize, double-check, investigate with the same skepticism we’d approach a Trump tweet. Want to ensure the world’s biggest business media brand approaches you as a potential funnel of disinformation? Then hire away.

This isn’t cancel culture, which is a societal blight. (There’s surely a nice living for each of these press secretaries on the true-believer circuit.) Nor is this politically motivated, as Forbes’ pro-entrepreneur, pro-growth worldview has generally placed it in the right-of-center camp over the past century — this standard needs to apply to liars from either party. It’s just a realization that, as Daniel Patrick Moynihan famously said, in a thriving democracy, everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but not their own facts. Our national reset starts there.

\n\n\n

This hurts Retrumplicans the only place they care about. Their pocket books.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Randall Lane in Forbes:

\n\n

Simple: Don’t let the chronic liars cash in on their dishonesty. Press secretaries like Joe Lockhart, Ari Fleischer and Jay Carney, who left the White House with their reputations in various stages of intact, made millions taking their skills — and credibility — to corporate America. Trump’s liars don’t merit that same golden parachute. Let it be known to the business world: Hire any of Trump’s fellow fabulists above, and Forbes will assume that everything your company or firm talks about is a lie. We’re going to scrutinize, double-check, investigate with the same skepticism we’d approach a Trump tweet. Want to ensure the world’s biggest business media brand approaches you as a potential funnel of disinformation? Then hire away.

This isn’t cancel culture, which is a societal blight. (There’s surely a nice living for each of these press secretaries on the true-believer circuit.) Nor is this politically motivated, as Forbes’ pro-entrepreneur, pro-growth worldview has generally placed it in the right-of-center camp over the past century — this standard needs to apply to liars from either party. It’s just a realization that, as Daniel Patrick Moynihan famously said, in a thriving democracy, everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but not their own facts. Our national reset starts there.

\n\n\n

This hurts Retrumplicans the only place they care about. Their pocket books.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/01/15/the-lies-we-tell-ourselves/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/01/15/the-lies-we-tell-ourselves/", "title": "The Lies We Tell Ourselves", "date_published": "2021-01-15T23:12:17-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-01-15T23:12:17-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Sam Sanders in an opinion piece for NPR:

\n\n

There is a lie some Americans tell themselves when America is on its worst behavior: “This isn’t America!” or “This isn’t who we are!” or “We’re better than this!”

You heard versions of this lie again this week after armed insurrectionists stormed the U.S. Capitol on urging from President Trump, attempting to undo the results of last November’s election.

Even in the halls of Congress, after the broken glass was cleared and U.S. senators and representatives were allowed back into their chambers from undisclosed locations, Republican Sen. Ben Sasse of Nebraska came back to this refrain: “Our kids need to know that this isn’t what America is.”

We are a country built on fabrication, nostalgia and euphemism. And every time America shows the worst of itself, all the contradictions collapse into the lie I’ve heard nonstop for the last several years: “This isn’t who we are.”

\n\n\n

January 6th told us exactly what and who we are. Now the questions is - how do start to become who we strive to be.

\n", "content_html": "

Sam Sanders in an opinion piece for NPR:

\n\n

There is a lie some Americans tell themselves when America is on its worst behavior: “This isn’t America!” or “This isn’t who we are!” or “We’re better than this!”

You heard versions of this lie again this week after armed insurrectionists stormed the U.S. Capitol on urging from President Trump, attempting to undo the results of last November’s election.

Even in the halls of Congress, after the broken glass was cleared and U.S. senators and representatives were allowed back into their chambers from undisclosed locations, Republican Sen. Ben Sasse of Nebraska came back to this refrain: “Our kids need to know that this isn’t what America is.”

We are a country built on fabrication, nostalgia and euphemism. And every time America shows the worst of itself, all the contradictions collapse into the lie I’ve heard nonstop for the last several years: “This isn’t who we are.”

\n\n\n

January 6th told us exactly what and who we are. Now the questions is - how do start to become who we strive to be.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/01/15/the-deplorables/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/01/15/the-deplorables/", "title": "The Deplorables", "date_published": "2021-01-15T22:53:03-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-01-15T22:53:03-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Hillary Clinton during a September 2016 fund raiser event:

\n\n

“You know, to just be grossly generalistic, you could put half of Trump’s supporters into what I call the basket of deplorables. Right?” Clinton said. “The racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamaphobic—you name it. And unfortunately there are people like that. And he has lifted them up.”

\n\n\n

And they just proved it on January 6th.

\n", "content_html": "

Hillary Clinton during a September 2016 fund raiser event:

\n\n

“You know, to just be grossly generalistic, you could put half of Trump’s supporters into what I call the basket of deplorables. Right?” Clinton said. “The racist, sexist, homophobic, xenophobic, Islamaphobic—you name it. And unfortunately there are people like that. And he has lifted them up.”

\n\n\n

And they just proved it on January 6th.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/01/09/eight-questions-for-president-obama/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/01/09/eight-questions-for-president-obama/", "title": "Eight Questions for President Obama", "date_published": "2021-01-09T23:48:36-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-01-09T23:48:36-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n

President Obama - you know you can still run for Senate again right?

\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n

President Obama - you know you can still run for Senate again right?

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/01/09/how-history-regard-donald-trump/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/01/09/how-history-regard-donald-trump/", "title": "Twitter bans Donald Trump", "date_published": "2021-01-09T12:36:33-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-01-09T12:36:33-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

After close review of recent Tweets from the @realDonaldTrump account and the context around them we have permanently suspended the account due to the risk of further incitement of violence.

\n\n\n

Finally. We will never have to read another incoherent, racist, threatening tweet from this buffoon ever again.

\n\n

Twitter has provided the best statement on how Donal Trump will be rememberd.

\n", "content_html": "

After close review of recent Tweets from the @realDonaldTrump account and the context around them we have permanently suspended the account due to the risk of further incitement of violence.

\n\n\n

Finally. We will never have to read another incoherent, racist, threatening tweet from this buffoon ever again.

\n\n

Twitter has provided the best statement on how Donal Trump will be rememberd.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/01/09/wother-countries-treat-their-people-so-much-better/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/01/09/wother-countries-treat-their-people-so-much-better/", "title": "Other Countries Treat Their People So Much Better", "date_published": "2021-01-09T03:43:10-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-01-09T03:43:10-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

We’re taught to believe that America is the greatest country on earth and that it couldn’t possibly get any better. Let’s put that claim to the test. This video compares the US to other wealthy nations using several key metrics: “low-skilled” job compensation, vacation time, length of the work week, and paid parental leave.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\nIt should be absolutely embarrassing that the wealthiest country the world has ever seen ranks dead last in every category.

\n", "content_html": "

We’re taught to believe that America is the greatest country on earth and that it couldn’t possibly get any better. Let’s put that claim to the test. This video compares the US to other wealthy nations using several key metrics: “low-skilled” job compensation, vacation time, length of the work week, and paid parental leave.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\nIt should be absolutely embarrassing that the wealthiest country the world has ever seen ranks dead last in every category.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/01/09/one-photo-says-everything/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/01/09/one-photo-says-everything/", "title": "one photo says everything", "date_published": "2021-01-09T00:05:23-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-01-09T00:05:23-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n", "content_html": "

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/01/08/ban-trump-indefinitely/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/01/08/ban-trump-indefinitely/", "title": "Ban Trump indefinitely", "date_published": "2021-01-08T16:40:53-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-01-08T16:40:53-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

I completely agree with Kara Swisher:

\n\n

That is why Twitter and Facebook and YouTube, which are the three main conduits of online communications for most Americans, must now de-platform Trump permanently.

I do not call for this lightly and have always thought that he should get a wider berth owing to being the most newsworthy person on the planet. But it’s long past time to make an example of him as a persistent violator of platform rules who cynically games their laudable impulse toward allowing as much speech as possible. […]

Twitter — Trump’s favored online communications vehicle — says as much in its civic integrity policy, noting that “you may not use Twitter’s services for the purpose of manipulating or interfering in elections or other civic processes.” Well, he has done that over and over on social media, raging like the monster that he has always been.

\n\n\n

Considering the traffic that Trump drives to these services and by definition profits, I am not holding my breath that they will do the right thing.

\n", "content_html": "

I completely agree with Kara Swisher:

\n\n

That is why Twitter and Facebook and YouTube, which are the three main conduits of online communications for most Americans, must now de-platform Trump permanently.

I do not call for this lightly and have always thought that he should get a wider berth owing to being the most newsworthy person on the planet. But it’s long past time to make an example of him as a persistent violator of platform rules who cynically games their laudable impulse toward allowing as much speech as possible. […]

Twitter — Trump’s favored online communications vehicle — says as much in its civic integrity policy, noting that “you may not use Twitter’s services for the purpose of manipulating or interfering in elections or other civic processes.” Well, he has done that over and over on social media, raging like the monster that he has always been.

\n\n\n

Considering the traffic that Trump drives to these services and by definition profits, I am not holding my breath that they will do the right thing.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/01/08/brianna-keilar-be-bringing-receipts/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/01/08/brianna-keilar-be-bringing-receipts/", "title": "Brianna Keilar rolling the tape ", "date_published": "2021-01-08T04:06:31-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-01-08T04:06:31-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

CNN’s Brianna Keilar - what truth to power looks like:

\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

CNN’s Brianna Keilar - what truth to power looks like:

\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/01/08/simon-and-schuster-cancel-josh-hawleys-book/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/01/08/simon-and-schuster-cancel-josh-hawleys-book/", "title": "Simon & Schuster cancel Josh Hawley's Book", "date_published": "2021-01-08T03:43:27-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-01-08T03:43:27-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

As a publisher it will always be our mission to amplify a variety of voices and viewpoints; at the same time we take seriously our larger public responsibility as citizens, and cannot support Senator Hawley after his role in what became a dangerous threat to our democracy and freedom.

\n\n\n

Facebook and Twitter should take note.

\n", "content_html": "

As a publisher it will always be our mission to amplify a variety of voices and viewpoints; at the same time we take seriously our larger public responsibility as citizens, and cannot support Senator Hawley after his role in what became a dangerous threat to our democracy and freedom.

\n\n\n

Facebook and Twitter should take note.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/01/08/iwhat-a-presidency-looks-like/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/01/08/iwhat-a-presidency-looks-like/", "title": "What a presidency looks like", "date_published": "2021-01-08T02:40:15-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-01-08T02:40:15-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Pete Souza, former Official White House Photographer for U.S. Presidents Ronald Reagan and Barack Obama reminds us what a normal presidency looks like.

\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Pete Souza, former Official White House Photographer for U.S. Presidents Ronald Reagan and Barack Obama reminds us what a normal presidency looks like.

\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/01/08/the-mob/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/01/08/the-mob/", "title": "The Mob", "date_published": "2021-01-08T01:15:54-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-01-08T01:15:54-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

An angry seditious mob, incited by President Trump, attacked the US Capital building yesterday.

\n\n

Who were these people? Well I can tell you who they weren’t:

\n\n\n\n\n

I think you can figure this one out.

\n\n

\n

\n\n

\n\n

\n\n

\n", "content_html": "

An angry seditious mob, incited by President Trump, attacked the US Capital building yesterday.

\n\n

Who were these people? Well I can tell you who they weren’t:

\n\n\n\n\n

I think you can figure this one out.

\n\n

\n

\n\n

\n\n

\n\n

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/01/07/the-25th-amendment/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/01/07/the-25th-amendment/", "title": "The 25th Amendment", "date_published": "2021-01-07T12:47:19-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-01-07T12:47:19-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Donald Trump unleashed a mob on Capitol Hill. What he has done is without precedent in American history. Even if he had seven minutes left in his presidency, he should not be permitted to spend another second as the President. Nancy Pelosi should call an emergency session of the House tonight and impeach the president, and Mitch McConnell should convene the Senate tomorrow and call a vote to remove Trump from the presidency.

\n\n\n

If there ever was a need for invoking the 25th Amendment, the time is now.

\n", "content_html": "

Donald Trump unleashed a mob on Capitol Hill. What he has done is without precedent in American history. Even if he had seven minutes left in his presidency, he should not be permitted to spend another second as the President. Nancy Pelosi should call an emergency session of the House tonight and impeach the president, and Mitch McConnell should convene the Senate tomorrow and call a vote to remove Trump from the presidency.

\n\n\n

If there ever was a need for invoking the 25th Amendment, the time is now.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/01/07/republicans-this-is-on-you/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/01/07/republicans-this-is-on-you/", "title": "Republicans - this is on you.", "date_published": "2021-01-07T12:45:55-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-01-07T12:45:55-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n

Day 1 vs. Day 1,448 pic.twitter.com/OohffkCQrc

— 11th Hour (@11thHour) January 6, 2021
\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "
\n

Day 1 vs. Day 1,448 pic.twitter.com/OohffkCQrc

— 11th Hour (@11thHour) January 6, 2021
\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2021/01/06/republicans-meet-their-monster/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2021/01/06/republicans-meet-their-monster/", "title": "Republicans Meet their Monster", "date_published": "2021-01-06T23:03:57-05:00", "date_modified": "2021-01-06T23:03:57-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

The political enablers of Donald Trump finally met the monster they created face to face. This will be their legacy.

\n\n

Elaine Godfrey for The Atlantic:

\n\n

But the morning’s fevered theorizing about election fraud and “Stop the steal!” chants, which at first felt more pitiful than threatening, gave way to violence by the afternoon. The mob stormed the Capitol, chased police officers up the marble steps, and forced the evacuation of the vice president as hundreds of lawmakers and congressional staff huddled under desks and reached for gas masks. It was a grave moment for American democracy, and a clarifying one as well: Today was one of the few times that Trump’s most extreme supporters actually encountered the Republican lawmakers who have stoked their anger and encouraged their delusions for years.

The politicians who enabled Trump did not expect the president’s followers to ever break through the glass windows of the Capitol and ascend the Senate dais. They did not anticipate that a man wearing a camp auschwitz shirt or others, with Confederate flags or dressed as fur-clad Vikings, would breach the building; that a woman would lie dying by one of the building’s entrances, shot by Capitol Police. Trump, for them, has been a blunt instrument they can use to retain power, appoint conservative judges, and pass tax cuts. Today, these Republicans finally confronted the monster they’ve created.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

The political enablers of Donald Trump finally met the monster they created face to face. This will be their legacy.

\n\n

Elaine Godfrey for The Atlantic:

\n\n

But the morning’s fevered theorizing about election fraud and “Stop the steal!” chants, which at first felt more pitiful than threatening, gave way to violence by the afternoon. The mob stormed the Capitol, chased police officers up the marble steps, and forced the evacuation of the vice president as hundreds of lawmakers and congressional staff huddled under desks and reached for gas masks. It was a grave moment for American democracy, and a clarifying one as well: Today was one of the few times that Trump’s most extreme supporters actually encountered the Republican lawmakers who have stoked their anger and encouraged their delusions for years.

The politicians who enabled Trump did not expect the president’s followers to ever break through the glass windows of the Capitol and ascend the Senate dais. They did not anticipate that a man wearing a camp auschwitz shirt or others, with Confederate flags or dressed as fur-clad Vikings, would breach the building; that a woman would lie dying by one of the building’s entrances, shot by Capitol Police. Trump, for them, has been a blunt instrument they can use to retain power, appoint conservative judges, and pass tax cuts. Today, these Republicans finally confronted the monster they’ve created.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/12/29/american-dream-is-now-aspirational/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/12/29/american-dream-is-now-aspirational/", "title": "The aspirational American Dream", "date_published": "2020-12-29T12:17:33-05:00", "date_modified": "2020-12-29T12:17:33-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Dani Exliex Ryskamp in The Atlantic - The Life in The Simpsons Is No Longer Attainable:

\n\n

Adjusted for inflation, Homer’s 1996 income of $25,000 would be roughly $42,000 today, about 60 percent of the 2019 median U.S. income. But salary aside, the world for someone like Homer Simpson is far less secure. Union membership, which protects wages and benefits for millions of workers in positions like Homer’s, dropped from 14.5 percent in 1996 to 10.3 percent today. With that decline came the loss of income security and many guaranteed benefits, including health insurance and pension plans. In 1993’s episode “Last Exit to Springfield,” Lisa needs braces at the same time that Homer’s dental plan evaporates. Unable to afford Lisa’s orthodontia without that insurance, Homer leads a strike. Mr. Burns, the boss, eventually capitulates to the union’s demand for dental coverage, resulting in shiny new braces for Lisa and one fewer financial headache for her parents. What would Homer have done today without the support of his union?

The purchasing power of Homer’s paycheck, moreover, has shrunk dramatically. The median house costs 2.4 times what it did in the mid-’90s. Health-care expenses for one person are three times what they were 25 years ago. The median tuition for a four-year college is 1.8 times what it was then. In today’s world, Marge would have to get a job too. But even then, they would struggle. Inflation and stagnant wages have led to a rise in two-income households, but to an erosion of economic stability for the people who occupy them.

[...]

Someone I follow on Twitter, Erika Chappell, recently encapsulated my feelings about The Simpsons in a tweet: “That a show which was originally about a dysfunctional mess of a family barely clinging to middle class life in the aftermath of the Reagan administration has now become aspirational is frankly the most on the nose manifestations [sic] of capitalist American decline I can think of.”

For many, a life of constant economic uncertainty—in which some of us are one emergency away from losing everything, no matter how much we work—is normal. Second jobs are no longer for extra cash; they are for survival. It wasn’t always this way. When The Simpsons first aired, few would have predicted that Americans would eventually find the family’s life out of reach. But for too many of us now, it is.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Dani Exliex Ryskamp in The Atlantic - The Life in The Simpsons Is No Longer Attainable:

\n\n

Adjusted for inflation, Homer’s 1996 income of $25,000 would be roughly $42,000 today, about 60 percent of the 2019 median U.S. income. But salary aside, the world for someone like Homer Simpson is far less secure. Union membership, which protects wages and benefits for millions of workers in positions like Homer’s, dropped from 14.5 percent in 1996 to 10.3 percent today. With that decline came the loss of income security and many guaranteed benefits, including health insurance and pension plans. In 1993’s episode “Last Exit to Springfield,” Lisa needs braces at the same time that Homer’s dental plan evaporates. Unable to afford Lisa’s orthodontia without that insurance, Homer leads a strike. Mr. Burns, the boss, eventually capitulates to the union’s demand for dental coverage, resulting in shiny new braces for Lisa and one fewer financial headache for her parents. What would Homer have done today without the support of his union?

The purchasing power of Homer’s paycheck, moreover, has shrunk dramatically. The median house costs 2.4 times what it did in the mid-’90s. Health-care expenses for one person are three times what they were 25 years ago. The median tuition for a four-year college is 1.8 times what it was then. In today’s world, Marge would have to get a job too. But even then, they would struggle. Inflation and stagnant wages have led to a rise in two-income households, but to an erosion of economic stability for the people who occupy them.

[...]

Someone I follow on Twitter, Erika Chappell, recently encapsulated my feelings about The Simpsons in a tweet: “That a show which was originally about a dysfunctional mess of a family barely clinging to middle class life in the aftermath of the Reagan administration has now become aspirational is frankly the most on the nose manifestations [sic] of capitalist American decline I can think of.”

For many, a life of constant economic uncertainty—in which some of us are one emergency away from losing everything, no matter how much we work—is normal. Second jobs are no longer for extra cash; they are for survival. It wasn’t always this way. When The Simpsons first aired, few would have predicted that Americans would eventually find the family’s life out of reach. But for too many of us now, it is.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/12/24/apple-car/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/12/24/apple-car/", "title": "Apple Car", "date_published": "2020-12-24T22:12:03-05:00", "date_modified": "2020-12-24T22:12:03-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Starting in 2014, Apple began working on “Project Titan,” with upwards of 1,000 employees working on developing an electric vehicle at a secret location near its Cupertino headquarters.

\n\n

Over the course of the last several years, rumors even suggested Apple shelved plans for a car, but Apple has overcome development problems and still plans to develop a consumer-facing car.

\n\n

Stephen Nellis, Norihiko Shirouzu, and Paul Lienert, reporting for Reuters:

\n\n

Apple Inc. is moving forward with self-driving car technology and is targeting 2024 to produce a passenger vehicle that could include its own breakthrough battery technology, people familiar with the matter told Reuters. […]

As for the car’s battery, Apple plans to use a unique “monocell” design that bulks up the individual cells in the battery and frees up space inside the battery pack by eliminating pouches and modules that hold battery materials, one of the people said.

Apple’s design means that more active material can be packed inside the battery, giving the car a potentially longer range. Apple is also examining a chemistry for the battery called LFP, or lithium iron phosphate, the person said, which is inherently less likely to overheat and is thus safer than other types of lithium-ion batteries.

”It’s next level,” the person said of Apple’s battery technology. “Like the first time you saw the iPhone.”

\n\n\n

The iPhone was a shift in what a phone was. Apple redefined the phone as a personal computing device that had a phone app. Everyone else was making phones that just happened to have compute capability bolted on.

\n\n

It’ll be interesting to see what Apple has up its sleeves.

\n", "content_html": "

Starting in 2014, Apple began working on “Project Titan,” with upwards of 1,000 employees working on developing an electric vehicle at a secret location near its Cupertino headquarters.

\n\n

Over the course of the last several years, rumors even suggested Apple shelved plans for a car, but Apple has overcome development problems and still plans to develop a consumer-facing car.

\n\n

Stephen Nellis, Norihiko Shirouzu, and Paul Lienert, reporting for Reuters:

\n\n

Apple Inc. is moving forward with self-driving car technology and is targeting 2024 to produce a passenger vehicle that could include its own breakthrough battery technology, people familiar with the matter told Reuters. […]

As for the car’s battery, Apple plans to use a unique “monocell” design that bulks up the individual cells in the battery and frees up space inside the battery pack by eliminating pouches and modules that hold battery materials, one of the people said.

Apple’s design means that more active material can be packed inside the battery, giving the car a potentially longer range. Apple is also examining a chemistry for the battery called LFP, or lithium iron phosphate, the person said, which is inherently less likely to overheat and is thus safer than other types of lithium-ion batteries.

”It’s next level,” the person said of Apple’s battery technology. “Like the first time you saw the iPhone.”

\n\n\n

The iPhone was a shift in what a phone was. Apple redefined the phone as a personal computing device that had a phone app. Everyone else was making phones that just happened to have compute capability bolted on.

\n\n

It’ll be interesting to see what Apple has up its sleeves.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/12/21/if-you-fall-through-thin-ice/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/12/21/if-you-fall-through-thin-ice/", "title": "If You Fall Through Thin Ice", "date_published": "2020-12-21T14:09:19-05:00", "date_modified": "2020-12-21T14:09:19-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Another item to file under useless information that just might one day save your life. Kenton Whitman explains how to survive a fall through ice on a frozen lake or river.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\n\n

While it varies with water temperature and body mass, it can take 30 minutes or more for most adults to become even mildly hypothermic in ice water. Knowing this is vitally important in a survival situation, since people would be far less likely to panic if they knew that hypothermia would not occur quickly and that they have some time to make good decisions and actions to save themselves.

\n\n\n

In other words - keep calm and kick your way out.

\n", "content_html": "

Another item to file under useless information that just might one day save your life. Kenton Whitman explains how to survive a fall through ice on a frozen lake or river.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\n\n

While it varies with water temperature and body mass, it can take 30 minutes or more for most adults to become even mildly hypothermic in ice water. Knowing this is vitally important in a survival situation, since people would be far less likely to panic if they knew that hypothermia would not occur quickly and that they have some time to make good decisions and actions to save themselves.

\n\n\n

In other words - keep calm and kick your way out.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/12/14/northern-lights-photographer-of-the-year-for-2020/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/12/14/northern-lights-photographer-of-the-year-for-2020/", "title": "Northern Lights Photographer of the Year for 2020", "date_published": "2020-12-14T23:25:39-05:00", "date_modified": "2020-12-14T23:25:39-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Maze’s photo, of the aurora australis in Tasmania, is stunning — one of the best astronomy photos I have ever seen. Here’s how he captured it:

\n\n

Captured in this image is a trifecta of astronomical phenomena that made for some of the best astrophotography conditions one can witness in Australia, namely, the setting Milky Way galactic core, zodiacal light, and of course, the elusive Aurora Australis. On top of this, a sparkling display of oceanic bioluminescence adorned the crashing waves, adding the cherry on top to what was already a breathtaking experience.

Having been out of reception and civilization for over a day, fellow photographer Luke Tscharke and I had no idea the aurora would strike on this night. We’d just heard rumors of a potential solar storm. We could barely contain our excitement when the lights first showed up on our camera’s screens. We later realized we were in the best place on the entire continent to witness the rare show, with Lion Rock being on the southernmost cape of Tasmania and much more cloud-free than the rest of the state at the time.

The colors that our cameras picked up were incredible, too. Rather than the classic green, the display ranged from yellow and orange to pink and purple. When I’d captured enough frames that I was happy with, I simply stood by my camera with my head tilted towards the sky, occasionally swirling my hand around in the sparkling water by my feet. I’m forever grateful for moments in nature like this that show us the true wonders of our planet.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Maze’s photo, of the aurora australis in Tasmania, is stunning — one of the best astronomy photos I have ever seen. Here’s how he captured it:

\n\n

Captured in this image is a trifecta of astronomical phenomena that made for some of the best astrophotography conditions one can witness in Australia, namely, the setting Milky Way galactic core, zodiacal light, and of course, the elusive Aurora Australis. On top of this, a sparkling display of oceanic bioluminescence adorned the crashing waves, adding the cherry on top to what was already a breathtaking experience.

Having been out of reception and civilization for over a day, fellow photographer Luke Tscharke and I had no idea the aurora would strike on this night. We’d just heard rumors of a potential solar storm. We could barely contain our excitement when the lights first showed up on our camera’s screens. We later realized we were in the best place on the entire continent to witness the rare show, with Lion Rock being on the southernmost cape of Tasmania and much more cloud-free than the rest of the state at the time.

The colors that our cameras picked up were incredible, too. Rather than the classic green, the display ranged from yellow and orange to pink and purple. When I’d captured enough frames that I was happy with, I simply stood by my camera with my head tilted towards the sky, occasionally swirling my hand around in the sparkling water by my feet. I’m forever grateful for moments in nature like this that show us the true wonders of our planet.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/12/10/apple-search-engine/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/12/10/apple-search-engine/", "title": "Apple Search Engine", "date_published": "2020-12-10T02:11:07-05:00", "date_modified": "2020-12-10T02:11:07-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Looks like Apple is seriously ramping up its search bot activity. This looks like a direct result of U.K. competition commission threat to break up the Google/Apple agreement to be the default search engine on iOS devices.

\n\n

But does Apple really have a chance of disrupting Google at its own game? FastCompany’s Hamza Mudassir:

\n\n

Apple’s search engine will have a different future if rumors about its business model are true. Apple has been focusing heavily on user privacy recently, including but not limited to publicly refusing to give secret access to its devices to the FBI. It will be very much in line with this “privacy first” position that Apple chooses not to make money from advertising, which involves exposing customer usage data to third parties. Instead, it could simply sell more of its highly profitable devices and subscriptions to privacy-conscious customers. By not following Google’s footsteps, Apple does not have to engage with the search giant on its terms.

\n\n\n

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Looks like Apple is seriously ramping up its search bot activity. This looks like a direct result of U.K. competition commission threat to break up the Google/Apple agreement to be the default search engine on iOS devices.

\n\n

But does Apple really have a chance of disrupting Google at its own game? FastCompany’s Hamza Mudassir:

\n\n

Apple’s search engine will have a different future if rumors about its business model are true. Apple has been focusing heavily on user privacy recently, including but not limited to publicly refusing to give secret access to its devices to the FBI. It will be very much in line with this “privacy first” position that Apple chooses not to make money from advertising, which involves exposing customer usage data to third parties. Instead, it could simply sell more of its highly profitable devices and subscriptions to privacy-conscious customers. By not following Google’s footsteps, Apple does not have to engage with the search giant on its terms.

\n\n\n

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/12/07/why-apple-will-disrupt-the-cpu-industry/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/12/07/why-apple-will-disrupt-the-cpu-industry/", "title": "Why Apple will disrupt the CPU industry", "date_published": "2020-12-07T14:46:26-05:00", "date_modified": "2020-12-07T14:46:26-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

In his excellent piece on Why Is Apple’s M1 Chip So Fast?, Erik Engheim summarizes Apple’s greatest advantage in the upcoming CPU wars.

\n\n

Here we get a big problem with the Intel and AMD business model. Their business models are based on selling general-purpose CPUs, which people just slot onto a large PC motherboard. Thus computer-makers can simply buy motherboards, memory, CPUs, and graphics cards from different vendors and integrate them into one solution.

But we are quickly moving away from that world. In the new SoC world, you don’t assemble physical components from different vendors. Instead, you assemble IP (intellectual property) from different vendors. You buy the design for graphics cards, CPUs, modems, IO controllers, and other things from different vendors and use that to design an SoC in-house. Then you get a foundry to manufacture this.

Now you got a big problem, because neither Intel, AMD, or Nvidia are going to license their intellectual property to Dell or HP for them to make an SoC for their machines.

[...]

For Apple this is simple. They control the whole widget. They give you, for example, the Core ML library for developers to write machine learning stuff. Whether Core ML runs on Apple’s CPU or the Neural Engine is an implementation detail developers don’t have to care about.

\n\n\n

Buckle in - we are in for a very interesting 2021!

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

In his excellent piece on Why Is Apple’s M1 Chip So Fast?, Erik Engheim summarizes Apple’s greatest advantage in the upcoming CPU wars.

\n\n

Here we get a big problem with the Intel and AMD business model. Their business models are based on selling general-purpose CPUs, which people just slot onto a large PC motherboard. Thus computer-makers can simply buy motherboards, memory, CPUs, and graphics cards from different vendors and integrate them into one solution.

But we are quickly moving away from that world. In the new SoC world, you don’t assemble physical components from different vendors. Instead, you assemble IP (intellectual property) from different vendors. You buy the design for graphics cards, CPUs, modems, IO controllers, and other things from different vendors and use that to design an SoC in-house. Then you get a foundry to manufacture this.

Now you got a big problem, because neither Intel, AMD, or Nvidia are going to license their intellectual property to Dell or HP for them to make an SoC for their machines.

[...]

For Apple this is simple. They control the whole widget. They give you, for example, the Core ML library for developers to write machine learning stuff. Whether Core ML runs on Apple’s CPU or the Neural Engine is an implementation detail developers don’t have to care about.

\n\n\n

Buckle in - we are in for a very interesting 2021!

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/12/06/did-you-not-know-who-this-man-was/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/12/06/did-you-not-know-who-this-man-was/", "title": "Did You Not Know Who This Man Was?", "date_published": "2020-12-06T18:11:37-05:00", "date_modified": "2020-12-06T18:11:37-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Jake Tapper has a question for the GOP:

\n\n

And more importantly, tragically, unacceptably, horrifyingly even putting lives at risk - it has to be asked. Did you not know who this man was when you took him in?

\n\n\n

The horrifying truth is that they did know. The GOP decided to put their self interest, their pursuit of power and their party before the United States and their constituents. This administration and the members of the GOP have put the final nail into the coffin of “The Party of Lincoln”.

\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Jake Tapper has a question for the GOP:

\n\n

And more importantly, tragically, unacceptably, horrifyingly even putting lives at risk - it has to be asked. Did you not know who this man was when you took him in?

\n\n\n

The horrifying truth is that they did know. The GOP decided to put their self interest, their pursuit of power and their party before the United States and their constituents. This administration and the members of the GOP have put the final nail into the coffin of “The Party of Lincoln”.

\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/12/05/limitations-of-ibis/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/12/05/limitations-of-ibis/", "title": "Limitations of IBIS", "date_published": "2020-12-05T02:11:24-05:00", "date_modified": "2020-12-05T02:11:24-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

IBIS is one of the most useful advancements in digital photography. Olympus arguably had the most sophisticated implementation for its Micro Four Thirds system - which supported an amazing 6.3 stops! Which begs the question just how far can this technology go?

\n\n

Olympus claimed that 6.3 stops was the theoretical limit due to the earth’s rotation, not the electronics. David Berryrieser in at The Center Column has a detailed mathematical explanation. Here is a summary for those who are terrified of a little math :)

\n\n

To illustrate , lets imagine that you are somewhere on the Earth’s surface, pointing the camera due East or West. For simplicity, lets assume you are on the equator, but your latitude doesn’t actually matter for this analysis. There are 86,400 seconds in a day, so Earth rotates at a rate of 2π/86400 radians/second, or 7.27*10^-5 rad/s. That means that your subject, which is presumably stationary on Earth’s surface as well, is rotating at this rate. Your camera, which is using its IBIS system to attempt to keep everything as still as possible, may not realize that you are rotating with your subject and will instead try to zero out any rotation of the camera, including that of the Earth. More technically, the camera is trying to maintain stability with respect to an inertial reference frame, which by virtue of the Earth’s rotation, you and your subject are not.

\n\n\n

Lets face it though, nothing will beat good technique and a tripod!

\n", "content_html": "

IBIS is one of the most useful advancements in digital photography. Olympus arguably had the most sophisticated implementation for its Micro Four Thirds system - which supported an amazing 6.3 stops! Which begs the question just how far can this technology go?

\n\n

Olympus claimed that 6.3 stops was the theoretical limit due to the earth’s rotation, not the electronics. David Berryrieser in at The Center Column has a detailed mathematical explanation. Here is a summary for those who are terrified of a little math :)

\n\n

To illustrate , lets imagine that you are somewhere on the Earth’s surface, pointing the camera due East or West. For simplicity, lets assume you are on the equator, but your latitude doesn’t actually matter for this analysis. There are 86,400 seconds in a day, so Earth rotates at a rate of 2π/86400 radians/second, or 7.27*10^-5 rad/s. That means that your subject, which is presumably stationary on Earth’s surface as well, is rotating at this rate. Your camera, which is using its IBIS system to attempt to keep everything as still as possible, may not realize that you are rotating with your subject and will instead try to zero out any rotation of the camera, including that of the Earth. More technically, the camera is trying to maintain stability with respect to an inertial reference frame, which by virtue of the Earth’s rotation, you and your subject are not.

\n\n\n

Lets face it though, nothing will beat good technique and a tripod!

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/12/03/when-states-do-nothing/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/12/03/when-states-do-nothing/", "title": "When states do nothing", "date_published": "2020-12-03T22:39:25-05:00", "date_modified": "2020-12-03T22:39:25-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

The story of the coronavirus in this state is one of government inaction in the name of freedom and personal responsibility. Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds has followed President Donald Trump’s lead in downplaying the virus’s seriousness. She never imposed a full stay-at-home order for the state and allowed bars and restaurants to open much earlier than in other places. She imposed a mask mandate for the first time this month—one that health-care professionals consider comically ineffectual—and has questioned the science behind wearing masks at all. Through the month of November, Iowa vacillated between 1,700 and 5,500 cases every day. This week, the state’s test-positivity rate reached 50 percent. Iowa is what happens when a government does basically nothing to stop the spread of a deadly virus.

[..]

[Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds] did not require Iowans to wear a mask in public, ignoring requests from local public-health officials and the White House Coronavirus Task Force and arguing that the state shouldn’t make that choice for its people. “The more information that we give them, then personally they can make the decision to wear a mask or not,” Reynolds said in June. She also wouldn’t require face coverings in public schools, where she ordered that students spend at least 50 percent of their instructional time in classrooms. When Iowa City and other towns began to issue their own mask requirements, Reynolds countered that they were not enforceable, undermining their authority.

\n\n\n

All we need to do as a society is to achieve 95% mask usage and the pandemic would be controlled and life can began to return to normal. This is isn’t wishful thinking. Just look to South Korea as an example. South Korea has a total of 35,703 cases with 529 deaths as of this writing - the United States has 13,999,385 cases with 273,518 deaths.

\n\n

Wear a damn mask.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

The story of the coronavirus in this state is one of government inaction in the name of freedom and personal responsibility. Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds has followed President Donald Trump’s lead in downplaying the virus’s seriousness. She never imposed a full stay-at-home order for the state and allowed bars and restaurants to open much earlier than in other places. She imposed a mask mandate for the first time this month—one that health-care professionals consider comically ineffectual—and has questioned the science behind wearing masks at all. Through the month of November, Iowa vacillated between 1,700 and 5,500 cases every day. This week, the state’s test-positivity rate reached 50 percent. Iowa is what happens when a government does basically nothing to stop the spread of a deadly virus.

[..]

[Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds] did not require Iowans to wear a mask in public, ignoring requests from local public-health officials and the White House Coronavirus Task Force and arguing that the state shouldn’t make that choice for its people. “The more information that we give them, then personally they can make the decision to wear a mask or not,” Reynolds said in June. She also wouldn’t require face coverings in public schools, where she ordered that students spend at least 50 percent of their instructional time in classrooms. When Iowa City and other towns began to issue their own mask requirements, Reynolds countered that they were not enforceable, undermining their authority.

\n\n\n

All we need to do as a society is to achieve 95% mask usage and the pandemic would be controlled and life can began to return to normal. This is isn’t wishful thinking. Just look to South Korea as an example. South Korea has a total of 35,703 cases with 529 deaths as of this writing - the United States has 13,999,385 cases with 273,518 deaths.

\n\n

Wear a damn mask.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/12/03/fast-cool-long-lasting/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/12/03/fast-cool-long-lasting/", "title": "Fast. Cool. Energy Efficient.", "date_published": "2020-12-03T01:33:37-05:00", "date_modified": "2020-12-03T01:33:37-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Apple is about to disrupt the microprocessor industry. The M1 chip is as industry shaking as the iPhone.

\n\n

John Grubber at Daring Fireball sums it up perfectly:

\n\n

M1 Macs embarrass all other PCs — all Intel-based Macs, including automobile-priced Mac Pros, and every single machine running Windows or Linux. Those machines are just standing around in their underwear now because the M1 stole all their pants. Well, that just doesn’t happen, your instincts tell you. One company, even a company like Apple, doesn’t just embarrass the entire rest of a highly-competitive longstanding industry. But just because something hasn’t happened — or hasn’t happened in a very long while — doesn’t mean it can’t happen. And in this case, it just happened.

[...]

For the industry as a whole, though, the M1 Macs have dropped as a bit of a shock. One reason for this, I think, is that Apple’s silicon prowess in iOS devices has been a slow boil. iPhones and iPads are better computers — faster and more efficient — than their Android competitors. But it’s been an annual incremental game. And it’s hard to tell what’s attributable to iOS’s software efficiency vs. Android and what’s attributable to Apple’s silicon prowess vs. Qualcomm and Samsung and whoever else is making chips for Android devices.

M1 Macs completely upend what we can and should expect from PCs. It’s a breakthrough along the lines of the iPhone itself in 2007.

The adage is, “If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.” Emphasis on probably — the M1 Macs are an exception. They really are that good.

\n\n\n

Intel x86 is the modern Zune. Believe the hype - lest you sound like this guy:

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Apple is about to disrupt the microprocessor industry. The M1 chip is as industry shaking as the iPhone.

\n\n

John Grubber at Daring Fireball sums it up perfectly:

\n\n

M1 Macs embarrass all other PCs — all Intel-based Macs, including automobile-priced Mac Pros, and every single machine running Windows or Linux. Those machines are just standing around in their underwear now because the M1 stole all their pants. Well, that just doesn’t happen, your instincts tell you. One company, even a company like Apple, doesn’t just embarrass the entire rest of a highly-competitive longstanding industry. But just because something hasn’t happened — or hasn’t happened in a very long while — doesn’t mean it can’t happen. And in this case, it just happened.

[...]

For the industry as a whole, though, the M1 Macs have dropped as a bit of a shock. One reason for this, I think, is that Apple’s silicon prowess in iOS devices has been a slow boil. iPhones and iPads are better computers — faster and more efficient — than their Android competitors. But it’s been an annual incremental game. And it’s hard to tell what’s attributable to iOS’s software efficiency vs. Android and what’s attributable to Apple’s silicon prowess vs. Qualcomm and Samsung and whoever else is making chips for Android devices.

M1 Macs completely upend what we can and should expect from PCs. It’s a breakthrough along the lines of the iPhone itself in 2007.

The adage is, “If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.” Emphasis on probably — the M1 Macs are an exception. They really are that good.

\n\n\n

Intel x86 is the modern Zune. Believe the hype - lest you sound like this guy:

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/12/03/its-time-to-hibernate/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/12/03/its-time-to-hibernate/", "title": "It's Time to Hibernate", "date_published": "2020-12-03T01:21:18-05:00", "date_modified": "2020-12-03T01:21:18-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Derek Thompson in The Atlantic

\n\n

We’re also likely to see a historic increase in testing from all these people returning from their Thanksgiving vacation. On Sunday, the White House coronavirus-task-force coordinator, Deborah Birx, told CBS that everybody who traveled should “assume that you were exposed and you became infected.” That would mean tens of millions of people trying to get tested in the next week or so, leading to a backlog on top of the backlog.

In sum, the next few weeks are going to be a statistical blur at the very moment when families are looking for clarity regarding the winter holidays. As COVID-19 hospitalizations reach an all-time high, we are facing a normal weekend testing delay, exacerbated by a major holiday, complicated by the already rising COVID-19 caseload, and further burdened by the imminent wave of tests that will be demanded by people coming back from their Thanksgiving trip. For that reason, state and local governments, businesses, and families might have to fly blind for a while in the fog of pandemic.

The safe assumption is that cases, hospitalizations, and deaths will all reach new highs before Christmas. The virus is simply everywhere. While the spring wave slammed into the Northeast and the summer surge swept over the South, the latest surge, while concentrated in the Midwest, is truly national. Almost every state has seen an increase in cases since September, and nearly 40 states saw COVID-19 hospitalizations reach record highs in the past three weeks. Right when Americans should have separated themselves from new exposures, millions of them shuffled and reshuffled themselves into new combinations of people. This epidemiological experiment seems destined to produce more deaths, more grieving, more illness, and more exhausted health-care workers, who were already on a “catastrophic path” before 9 million people filed through TSA checkpoints in the past week.

\n\n\n

Seriously? What the hell is wrong with people? Buckle up - we are headed for the worst public health catastrophe in US history. Stay home. Hibernate.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Derek Thompson in The Atlantic

\n\n

We’re also likely to see a historic increase in testing from all these people returning from their Thanksgiving vacation. On Sunday, the White House coronavirus-task-force coordinator, Deborah Birx, told CBS that everybody who traveled should “assume that you were exposed and you became infected.” That would mean tens of millions of people trying to get tested in the next week or so, leading to a backlog on top of the backlog.

In sum, the next few weeks are going to be a statistical blur at the very moment when families are looking for clarity regarding the winter holidays. As COVID-19 hospitalizations reach an all-time high, we are facing a normal weekend testing delay, exacerbated by a major holiday, complicated by the already rising COVID-19 caseload, and further burdened by the imminent wave of tests that will be demanded by people coming back from their Thanksgiving trip. For that reason, state and local governments, businesses, and families might have to fly blind for a while in the fog of pandemic.

The safe assumption is that cases, hospitalizations, and deaths will all reach new highs before Christmas. The virus is simply everywhere. While the spring wave slammed into the Northeast and the summer surge swept over the South, the latest surge, while concentrated in the Midwest, is truly national. Almost every state has seen an increase in cases since September, and nearly 40 states saw COVID-19 hospitalizations reach record highs in the past three weeks. Right when Americans should have separated themselves from new exposures, millions of them shuffled and reshuffled themselves into new combinations of people. This epidemiological experiment seems destined to produce more deaths, more grieving, more illness, and more exhausted health-care workers, who were already on a “catastrophic path” before 9 million people filed through TSA checkpoints in the past week.

\n\n\n

Seriously? What the hell is wrong with people? Buckle up - we are headed for the worst public health catastrophe in US history. Stay home. Hibernate.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/12/02/scott-atlas-dr-death/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/12/02/scott-atlas-dr-death/", "title": "Scott Atlas did more damage than you can imagine", "date_published": "2020-12-02T11:21:09-05:00", "date_modified": "2020-12-02T11:21:09-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\nWhy do they keeping paying respect to Atlas by referring to him as a doctor? He has clearly shown that he has violated a doctor’s primary oath - do no harm. Scott Atlas should have his license revoked. At the very least stop giving him professional respect.

\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\nWhy do they keeping paying respect to Atlas by referring to him as a doctor? He has clearly shown that he has violated a doctor’s primary oath - do no harm. Scott Atlas should have his license revoked. At the very least stop giving him professional respect.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/11/24/nikon-classes-are-free-for-the-holidays/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/11/24/nikon-classes-are-free-for-the-holidays/", "title": "Nikon Classes are free for the holidays", "date_published": "2020-11-24T00:56:22-05:00", "date_modified": "2020-11-24T00:56:22-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

From November 23rd through December 31st, all classes in Nikon School Online can be streamed for free. All you need to do is sign up for an account with your name and email address.

\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

From November 23rd through December 31st, all classes in Nikon School Online can be streamed for free. All you need to do is sign up for an account with your name and email address.

\n\n\n\n\n\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/11/24/one-shot/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/11/24/one-shot/", "title": "One Shot", "date_published": "2020-11-24T00:34:50-05:00", "date_modified": "2020-11-24T00:34:50-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\n\n

Awarded the prestigious Candido Cannavo Award at the Milan Sport Film Festival 2018.

Built around the 100m men’s final in Rio de Janeiro, ONE SHOT explores the important role sport photographers have in capturing history. ONE SHOT is narrated by Olympic Champion Jonathan Edwards and features many multi-awarded photographers including Lucy Nicholson, Dave Burnett, Bob Martin, Tim de Waele and Japan’s own Tsuyoshi Matsumoto.

It also features 146 images representing some of the best works of another 96 photographers who have covered multiple Olympics going back over 50 years , with famous names such as Tony Duffy, Mike Powell, Heinz Kluetmeier, Franck Fife, Peter Read Miller, Doug Mills, Carl Yarbrough, John G. Zimmerman, Michael Kappeler, Kai Pfaffenbach, Gary Hershorn, Charlie Riedel, Simon Bruty, Jerry Lampen, Al Bello, Chang W. Lee to name but a few.

‘ONE SHOT looks at Olympians caught in time. The history makers of the Games captured in a single iconic moment. A story that has taken a lifetime to create and told in One Shot. One freeze frame.

With its official screening at the The Olympic Museum and then on the Olympic Channel and NBC Sports, in November 2018 ONE SHOT was awarded the prestigious Candido Cannavo Award at the World Final of the Milan Sport Film Festival 2018.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\n\n

Awarded the prestigious Candido Cannavo Award at the Milan Sport Film Festival 2018.

Built around the 100m men’s final in Rio de Janeiro, ONE SHOT explores the important role sport photographers have in capturing history. ONE SHOT is narrated by Olympic Champion Jonathan Edwards and features many multi-awarded photographers including Lucy Nicholson, Dave Burnett, Bob Martin, Tim de Waele and Japan’s own Tsuyoshi Matsumoto.

It also features 146 images representing some of the best works of another 96 photographers who have covered multiple Olympics going back over 50 years , with famous names such as Tony Duffy, Mike Powell, Heinz Kluetmeier, Franck Fife, Peter Read Miller, Doug Mills, Carl Yarbrough, John G. Zimmerman, Michael Kappeler, Kai Pfaffenbach, Gary Hershorn, Charlie Riedel, Simon Bruty, Jerry Lampen, Al Bello, Chang W. Lee to name but a few.

‘ONE SHOT looks at Olympians caught in time. The history makers of the Games captured in a single iconic moment. A story that has taken a lifetime to create and told in One Shot. One freeze frame.

With its official screening at the The Olympic Museum and then on the Olympic Channel and NBC Sports, in November 2018 ONE SHOT was awarded the prestigious Candido Cannavo Award at the World Final of the Milan Sport Film Festival 2018.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/11/24/apples-security-officer-inicted/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/11/24/apples-security-officer-inicted/", "title": "Apple's Chief Security Officer Indicted", "date_published": "2020-11-24T00:15:34-05:00", "date_modified": "2020-11-24T00:15:34-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

A grand jury issued two indictments ​on Thursday, Nov. 19, against Undersheriff Rick Sung, 48, and Capt. James Jensen, 43, who are accused of requesting bribes for concealed firearms licenses, also known as CCW licenses. Insurance broker Harpreet Chadha, 49, and Apple’s Chief Security Officer Thomas Moyer, 50, are accused of offering bribes to receive the permits, District Attorney Jeff Rosen said during a press conference on Monday morning.

The two-year investigation by the district attorney’s office found that Sung, who was allegedly aided by Jensen in one instance, held up the distribution of CCW licenses and refused to release them until the applicants gave something of value. […]

Sung and Jensen allegedly held up four gun licenses from Apple employees and extracted from Moyer a promise that Apple would donate iPads to the sheriff’s office. A donation of 200 iPads worth nearly $70,000 was ended at the last minute after Aug. 2, 2019, when Sung and Moyer learned that the district attorney’s office had issued a search warrant seizing all of the sheriff’s office’s CCW license records.

\n\n\n

Can’t understand this obsession with carrying firearms…

\n", "content_html": "

A grand jury issued two indictments ​on Thursday, Nov. 19, against Undersheriff Rick Sung, 48, and Capt. James Jensen, 43, who are accused of requesting bribes for concealed firearms licenses, also known as CCW licenses. Insurance broker Harpreet Chadha, 49, and Apple’s Chief Security Officer Thomas Moyer, 50, are accused of offering bribes to receive the permits, District Attorney Jeff Rosen said during a press conference on Monday morning.

The two-year investigation by the district attorney’s office found that Sung, who was allegedly aided by Jensen in one instance, held up the distribution of CCW licenses and refused to release them until the applicants gave something of value. […]

Sung and Jensen allegedly held up four gun licenses from Apple employees and extracted from Moyer a promise that Apple would donate iPads to the sheriff’s office. A donation of 200 iPads worth nearly $70,000 was ended at the last minute after Aug. 2, 2019, when Sung and Moyer learned that the district attorney’s office had issued a search warrant seizing all of the sheriff’s office’s CCW license records.

\n\n\n

Can’t understand this obsession with carrying firearms…

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/11/24/swiss-cheese-covid-19-defense/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/11/24/swiss-cheese-covid-19-defense/", "title": "Swiss Cheese Covid-19 Defense", "date_published": "2020-11-24T00:08:26-05:00", "date_modified": "2020-11-24T00:08:26-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Virologist Dr. Ian Mackay has visualized the Swiss cheese Covid-19 defense in a wonderful way (pictured above). Each layer of cheese represents a personal or shared intervention — like mask wearing, limiting your time indoors w/ crowds, proper ventilation, quarantine, vaccines — and the holes are imperfections. Applied together, these imperfect measures work like a filter and can vastly improve chances of success. He even added a “misinformation mouse” chewing through one of the cheese slices to represent how deceptive information can weaken these defenses.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Virologist Dr. Ian Mackay has visualized the Swiss cheese Covid-19 defense in a wonderful way (pictured above). Each layer of cheese represents a personal or shared intervention — like mask wearing, limiting your time indoors w/ crowds, proper ventilation, quarantine, vaccines — and the holes are imperfections. Applied together, these imperfect measures work like a filter and can vastly improve chances of success. He even added a “misinformation mouse” chewing through one of the cheese slices to represent how deceptive information can weaken these defenses.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/11/23/we-dont-need-to-meet-nazis-halfway/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/11/23/we-dont-need-to-meet-nazis-halfway/", "title": "We don't need to meet Nazis Halfway", "date_published": "2020-11-23T16:50:53-05:00", "date_modified": "2020-11-23T16:50:53-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito just complained that “you can’t say that marriage is a union between one man and one woman. Now it’s considered bigotry.” This is a standard complaint of the right: the real victim is the racist who has been called a racist, not the victim of his racism, the real oppression is to be impeded in your freedom to oppress. And of course Alito is disingenuous; you can say that stuff against marriage equality (and he did). Then other people can call you a bigot, because they get to have opinions too, but in his scheme such dissent is intolerable, which is fun coming from a member of the party whose devotees wore “fuck your feelings” shirts at its rallies and popularized the term “snowflake.”

Nevertheless, we get this hopelessly naive version of centrism, of the idea that if we’re nicer to the other side there will be no other side, just one big happy family. This inanity is also applied to the questions of belief and fact and principle, with some muddled cocktail of moral relativism and therapists’ “everyone’s feelings are valid” applied to everything. But the truth is not some compromise halfway between the truth and the lie, the fact and the delusion, the scientists and the propagandists. And the ethical is not halfway between white supremacists and human rights activists, rapists and feminists, synagogue massacrists and Jews, xenophobes and immigrants, delusional transphobes and trans people. Who the hell wants unity with Nazis until and unless they stop being Nazis?

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Supreme Court Justice Samuel Alito just complained that “you can’t say that marriage is a union between one man and one woman. Now it’s considered bigotry.” This is a standard complaint of the right: the real victim is the racist who has been called a racist, not the victim of his racism, the real oppression is to be impeded in your freedom to oppress. And of course Alito is disingenuous; you can say that stuff against marriage equality (and he did). Then other people can call you a bigot, because they get to have opinions too, but in his scheme such dissent is intolerable, which is fun coming from a member of the party whose devotees wore “fuck your feelings” shirts at its rallies and popularized the term “snowflake.”

Nevertheless, we get this hopelessly naive version of centrism, of the idea that if we’re nicer to the other side there will be no other side, just one big happy family. This inanity is also applied to the questions of belief and fact and principle, with some muddled cocktail of moral relativism and therapists’ “everyone’s feelings are valid” applied to everything. But the truth is not some compromise halfway between the truth and the lie, the fact and the delusion, the scientists and the propagandists. And the ethical is not halfway between white supremacists and human rights activists, rapists and feminists, synagogue massacrists and Jews, xenophobes and immigrants, delusional transphobes and trans people. Who the hell wants unity with Nazis until and unless they stop being Nazis?

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/11/07/richest-american-the-richest-families/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/11/07/richest-american-the-richest-families/", "title": "Richest American Families", "date_published": "2020-11-07T23:39:47-05:00", "date_modified": "2020-11-07T23:39:47-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Max DeNike aggregated the richest families in the United States, by state.

\n\n

\n

\nSo whats common among all of these? You guessed it - they are all white.

\n", "content_html": "

Max DeNike aggregated the richest families in the United States, by state.

\n\n

\n

\nSo whats common among all of these? You guessed it - they are all white.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/11/07/van-jones-what-are-your-thoughts/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/11/07/van-jones-what-are-your-thoughts/", "title": "Van Jones what are your thoughts?", "date_published": "2020-11-07T23:23:35-05:00", "date_modified": "2020-11-07T23:23:35-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Van Jones on CNN expresses what we are all (at least the 75 million plus Americans that voted for Biden) are feeling today.

\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Van Jones on CNN expresses what we are all (at least the 75 million plus Americans that voted for Biden) are feeling today.

\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/10/30/advice-from-john-mayer/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/10/30/advice-from-john-mayer/", "title": "John Mayer on improving 5x", "date_published": "2020-10-30T22:48:31-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-10-30T22:48:31-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Trace back why you like the thing, and learn the thing that made the thing you like, and you'll be five times better every time you do that.

\n\n\n\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Trace back why you like the thing, and learn the thing that made the thing you like, and you'll be five times better every time you do that.

\n\n\n\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/10/30/im-gonn-give-you-facts-dot-dot-dot/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/10/30/im-gonn-give-you-facts-dot-dot-dot/", "title": "I'm gonn give you facts...", "date_published": "2020-10-30T01:09:00-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-10-30T01:09:00-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Jordan Klepper on what hopefully is the last Trump rally of the 2020 campaign:

\n\n
\n\n\n


\n\n

Tony, I need my sheet. I’m gonna give you facts. That fact sheet.

\n\n

That fact sheet is in my car.

\n\n

Trump supporter pulling out her cell phone to find those facts.

\n\n

Okay, jobs added 4 million. Under Biden and Obama negative 2.8 million.

\n\n

What is your website you are on?

\n\n

I don’t know.

\n\n

And what is going to happen if Trump doesn’t win the 2020 election? What are his bat shit crazy supporters going to do?

\n\n

I will not live under a socialist government. Just look up the three red flags on the Biden campaign poster, there’s three red lines.

\n\n

yea

\n\n

Look it up on Google.

\n\n

Well I think it’s an E

\n\n

Its supposed to be an E but look at the tree red flags or red banners.

\n\n

And they mean?

\n\n

Communism

\n\n

He snuck communism right there on the flag?

\n\n

You got it.

\n\n

you don’t want to be in a place with socialized medicine?

\n\n

Nope.

\n\n

So where would you go?

\n\n

I am gonna look at Costa Rica.

\n\n

Costa Rica? Which has universal health care?

\n\n

Yea, I mean, I’m not gonna live under socialist rule. I don’t think Biden is gonna make the four years, and the camelback, forget it.

\n\n

Camelback? Who’s that?

\n\n

Kamala.

\n\n

These people are so ignorant. Whats scary and disturbing is how they all revel in their ignorance. And ignorance would be bad enough - if not for their racism. Here is hoping that this is an anomaly in American political history. Seven More days to go…

\n", "content_html": "

Jordan Klepper on what hopefully is the last Trump rally of the 2020 campaign:

\n\n
\n\n\n


\n\n

Tony, I need my sheet. I’m gonna give you facts. That fact sheet.

\n\n

That fact sheet is in my car.

\n\n

Trump supporter pulling out her cell phone to find those facts.

\n\n

Okay, jobs added 4 million. Under Biden and Obama negative 2.8 million.

\n\n

What is your website you are on?

\n\n

I don’t know.

\n\n

And what is going to happen if Trump doesn’t win the 2020 election? What are his bat shit crazy supporters going to do?

\n\n

I will not live under a socialist government. Just look up the three red flags on the Biden campaign poster, there’s three red lines.

\n\n

yea

\n\n

Look it up on Google.

\n\n

Well I think it’s an E

\n\n

Its supposed to be an E but look at the tree red flags or red banners.

\n\n

And they mean?

\n\n

Communism

\n\n

He snuck communism right there on the flag?

\n\n

You got it.

\n\n

you don’t want to be in a place with socialized medicine?

\n\n

Nope.

\n\n

So where would you go?

\n\n

I am gonna look at Costa Rica.

\n\n

Costa Rica? Which has universal health care?

\n\n

Yea, I mean, I’m not gonna live under socialist rule. I don’t think Biden is gonna make the four years, and the camelback, forget it.

\n\n

Camelback? Who’s that?

\n\n

Kamala.

\n\n

These people are so ignorant. Whats scary and disturbing is how they all revel in their ignorance. And ignorance would be bad enough - if not for their racism. Here is hoping that this is an anomaly in American political history. Seven More days to go…

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/10/25/what-a-president-sounds-like/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/10/25/what-a-president-sounds-like/", "title": "Leave no Doubt", "date_published": "2020-10-25T13:18:18-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-10-25T13:18:18-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

We are just over one week till the 2020 election (8 days, 11 hours, and 27 seconds of this writing). Regardless of where you stand on policy or what your political affiliation is, it is time to return to decency and intelligence in the White House. That doesn’t mean that we agree on everything, but it does mean that we can have a constructive, reasoned and intelligent conversation.

\n\n

And just in case you forgot what that looks like:

\n\n
\n\n\n



\nSo go out and vote. Leave no doubt.

\n", "content_html": "

We are just over one week till the 2020 election (8 days, 11 hours, and 27 seconds of this writing). Regardless of where you stand on policy or what your political affiliation is, it is time to return to decency and intelligence in the White House. That doesn’t mean that we agree on everything, but it does mean that we can have a constructive, reasoned and intelligent conversation.

\n\n

And just in case you forgot what that looks like:

\n\n
\n\n\n



\nSo go out and vote. Leave no doubt.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/10/24/back-to-the-future-35th-anniversary/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/10/24/back-to-the-future-35th-anniversary/", "title": "Back to the Future 35th Anniversary ", "date_published": "2020-10-24T18:48:13-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-10-24T18:48:13-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Hard to believe Back to the Future is 35 years old this year.

\n\n

One of the greatest movies ever made. Easily the best time-travel story. The writing is rock-solid, the double-act of Michael J.Fox & Christopher Lloyd are the heart and soul of this story and the timeless and epic score of Alan Silvestri gives the movie so much heart that makes it feel larger in scale.

\n\n

This movie has something that modern Hollywood lacks - a soul. Very few movies today have performances that make you want to watch them again. I have lost count of how many times I’ve seen it over the years but I still laugh every time Biff gets “the make like a tree” line wrong and the penultimate Clock Tower scene is a still a pulse-racing experience to this day. Doc Brown is on of my favorite characters of all time.

\n\n

35 years. Watch it today and its just as charming, funny, nail biting as when I saw it when I was as 12. They just don’t make movies like they used to. Here is a reimagining using 8 fan made animations that Universal strung together to reimagine Back to the Future.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\nAnd here is a recent cast re-uniting:\n

\n\n
\n\n\n


\nAnd I am still waiting for my hover board.

\n", "content_html": "

Hard to believe Back to the Future is 35 years old this year.

\n\n

One of the greatest movies ever made. Easily the best time-travel story. The writing is rock-solid, the double-act of Michael J.Fox & Christopher Lloyd are the heart and soul of this story and the timeless and epic score of Alan Silvestri gives the movie so much heart that makes it feel larger in scale.

\n\n

This movie has something that modern Hollywood lacks - a soul. Very few movies today have performances that make you want to watch them again. I have lost count of how many times I’ve seen it over the years but I still laugh every time Biff gets “the make like a tree” line wrong and the penultimate Clock Tower scene is a still a pulse-racing experience to this day. Doc Brown is on of my favorite characters of all time.

\n\n

35 years. Watch it today and its just as charming, funny, nail biting as when I saw it when I was as 12. They just don’t make movies like they used to. Here is a reimagining using 8 fan made animations that Universal strung together to reimagine Back to the Future.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\nAnd here is a recent cast re-uniting:\n

\n\n
\n\n\n


\nAnd I am still waiting for my hover board.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/10/22/william-mcraven-oped-on-joe-biden/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/10/22/william-mcraven-oped-on-joe-biden/", "title": "William McRaven - I Voted for Biden", "date_published": "2020-10-22T08:08:34-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-10-22T08:08:34-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n

\nWilliam McRaven, in an op-ed for the The Wall Street Journal:

\n\n

This week I went to the polls in Texas. Truth be told, I am a pro-life, pro-Second Amendment, small-government, strong-defense and a national-anthem-standing conservative. But, I also believe that black lives matter, that the Dreamers deserve a path to citizenship, that diversity and inclusion are essential to our national success, that education is the great equalizer, that climate change is real and that the First Amendment is the cornerstone of our democracy. Most important, I believe that America must lead in the world with courage, conviction and a sense of honor and humility.

If we remain indifferent to our role in the world, if we retreat from our obligation to our citizens and our allies and if we fail to choose the right leader, then we will pay the highest price for our neglect and shortsightedness.

I voted for Joe Biden.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n

\nWilliam McRaven, in an op-ed for the The Wall Street Journal:

\n\n

This week I went to the polls in Texas. Truth be told, I am a pro-life, pro-Second Amendment, small-government, strong-defense and a national-anthem-standing conservative. But, I also believe that black lives matter, that the Dreamers deserve a path to citizenship, that diversity and inclusion are essential to our national success, that education is the great equalizer, that climate change is real and that the First Amendment is the cornerstone of our democracy. Most important, I believe that America must lead in the world with courage, conviction and a sense of honor and humility.

If we remain indifferent to our role in the world, if we retreat from our obligation to our citizens and our allies and if we fail to choose the right leader, then we will pay the highest price for our neglect and shortsightedness.

I voted for Joe Biden.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/10/20/i-want-my-apple-music-tv/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/10/20/i-want-my-apple-music-tv/", "title": "I want my Apple Music TV", "date_published": "2020-10-20T01:13:35-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-10-20T01:13:35-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Apple has launched Apple Music TV, a free 24-hour curated livestream of popular music videos that will also include “exclusive new music videos and premiers, special curated music video blocks, and live shows and events as well as chart countdowns and guests,” according to the announcement.

\n\n\n

You know what would be great? If they bring back the original MTV VJs like Mark Godman and Martha Quinn. Sting said it best:

\n\n
\n\n\n



\nSomehow “I want my Apple Music TV” just doesn’t have the same ring to it.

\n", "content_html": "

Apple has launched Apple Music TV, a free 24-hour curated livestream of popular music videos that will also include “exclusive new music videos and premiers, special curated music video blocks, and live shows and events as well as chart countdowns and guests,” according to the announcement.

\n\n\n

You know what would be great? If they bring back the original MTV VJs like Mark Godman and Martha Quinn. Sting said it best:

\n\n
\n\n\n



\nSomehow “I want my Apple Music TV” just doesn’t have the same ring to it.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/10/20/local-covid-19-social-distancing-signs/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/10/20/local-covid-19-social-distancing-signs/", "title": "Local Covid-19 Social Distancing Signs", "date_published": "2020-10-20T01:04:03-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-10-20T01:04:03-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Rebecca Boyle recently asked her followers to share their local Covid-19 signage and their responses are here. My favorites:

\n\n

\n

\n

\n", "content_html": "

Rebecca Boyle recently asked her followers to share their local Covid-19 signage and their responses are here. My favorites:

\n\n

\n

\n

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/10/19/chris-christie-speaks-on-covid-19/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/10/19/chris-christie-speaks-on-covid-19/", "title": "Chris Christie speaks on COVID-19", "date_published": "2020-10-19T13:11:20-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-10-19T13:11:20-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n



\nFormer New Jersey governor Chris Christie is doing well after his bought with COVID-19 and spending 7 days in the ICU. He was given Eli Lilly anti-body treatment along with Remdesivir. In his own words:

\n\n

so I received both of those in combination very early on in my illness. The doctors decided that because I am an asthmatic tat they wanted to be very aggressive with the treatment and I am, you know, very fortunate that I have a great hospital right near my home, I have health insurance and I was able to have myself taken care of quickly before the disease got out of control.

\n\n

While I am glad that Governor Christie is doing well, he received health care that most Americans do not have access to. We have almost 40 million people who don’t have insurance. Most that do, have insurance that would not fully cover the treatment that Governor Christie has received.

\n\n

And his party is working to remove what little protections that most Americans do have. The privilege on display is repulsive.

\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n



\nFormer New Jersey governor Chris Christie is doing well after his bought with COVID-19 and spending 7 days in the ICU. He was given Eli Lilly anti-body treatment along with Remdesivir. In his own words:

\n\n

so I received both of those in combination very early on in my illness. The doctors decided that because I am an asthmatic tat they wanted to be very aggressive with the treatment and I am, you know, very fortunate that I have a great hospital right near my home, I have health insurance and I was able to have myself taken care of quickly before the disease got out of control.

\n\n

While I am glad that Governor Christie is doing well, he received health care that most Americans do not have access to. We have almost 40 million people who don’t have insurance. Most that do, have insurance that would not fully cover the treatment that Governor Christie has received.

\n\n

And his party is working to remove what little protections that most Americans do have. The privilege on display is repulsive.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/10/06/get-well-and-get-it-together/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/10/06/get-well-and-get-it-together/", "title": "Get well and get it together", "date_published": "2020-10-06T03:54:06-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-10-06T03:54:06-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\n\n

I wish you all health and recovery and a long life. But we have to note the tragedy here. It is horrible, and awful, and profound. Sick and in isolation, Mr. President, you have become a symbol of your own failures — failures of recklessness, ignorance, arrogance — the same failures you have been inflicting on the rest of us. Get well and please — for the rest of us who don’t get to go to Walter Reed — get well and get it together.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\n\n

I wish you all health and recovery and a long life. But we have to note the tragedy here. It is horrible, and awful, and profound. Sick and in isolation, Mr. President, you have become a symbol of your own failures — failures of recklessness, ignorance, arrogance — the same failures you have been inflicting on the rest of us. Get well and please — for the rest of us who don’t get to go to Walter Reed — get well and get it together.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/10/06/collapse-of-the-american-society/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/10/06/collapse-of-the-american-society/", "title": "Collapse of the American Society", "date_published": "2020-10-06T03:04:17-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-10-06T03:04:17-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Indi Samarajiva lived through the end of the civil war in Sri Lanka and just wrote about the decline of Sri Lankan society.

\n\n

This is how it happens. Precisely what you’re feeling now. The numbing litany of bad news. The ever rising outrages. People suffering, dying, and protesting all around you, while you think about dinner. If you’re trying to carry on while people around you die, your society is not collapsing. It’s already fallen down.

\n\n\n

With 210,000+ Americans dead due to covid, protests all over America, and a government that is failing at the most basic level - are we witnessing the fall of American society?

\n\n

I hope not, but with all that is going on, I am wondering what I am going to have for dinner…

\n", "content_html": "

Indi Samarajiva lived through the end of the civil war in Sri Lanka and just wrote about the decline of Sri Lankan society.

\n\n

This is how it happens. Precisely what you’re feeling now. The numbing litany of bad news. The ever rising outrages. People suffering, dying, and protesting all around you, while you think about dinner. If you’re trying to carry on while people around you die, your society is not collapsing. It’s already fallen down.

\n\n\n

With 210,000+ Americans dead due to covid, protests all over America, and a government that is failing at the most basic level - are we witnessing the fall of American society?

\n\n

I hope not, but with all that is going on, I am wondering what I am going to have for dinner…

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/10/06/a-civic-duty/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/10/06/a-civic-duty/", "title": "A CIVIC DUTY", "date_published": "2020-10-06T02:42:14-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-10-06T02:42:14-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

A new acronym / mnemonic: A CIViC DUTY

\n\n

\n\n

America Edwards has created a great set of posters.

\n", "content_html": "

A new acronym / mnemonic: A CIViC DUTY

\n\n

\n\n

America Edwards has created a great set of posters.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/10/06/protect-yourself-from-fcovid-19-aerosol-spread/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/10/06/protect-yourself-from-fcovid-19-aerosol-spread/", "title": "Protect yourself from Covid-19 Aerosol Spread", "date_published": "2020-10-06T02:01:30-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-10-06T02:01:30-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

A group of scientists have written up a Google Doc of advice for the public in a FAQ on Protecting Yourself from COVID-19 Aerosol Transmission.

\n\n

The goal of these FAQs is to provide information to the general public in an efficient manner about how to prevent aerosol transmission of COVID-19, with the hope that this will allow more informed decision making by individuals or organizations. All of this information has been posted in Twitter and other forums, but can be difficult to find. Having multiple experts working together, and having the ability to update this information also improves its quality. These FAQs represent our best understanding at this time, and should always be similar or more stringent than information provided by CDC, WHO, and most regional & local health authorities. If your authority has a more stringent guideline than discussed here, follow that more stringent guideline.

\n\n\n

From the most important actionable take away form the FAQ:

\n\n

3.5. How can I protect myself from aerosol transmission indoors?
We can never be perfectly safe, only safer. Hence, we need to take as many steps as possible to reduce the risk of our activities. You should try to avoid or reduce as much as possible situations that facilitate inhaling the “smoke” (exhaled air) from others. To reduce risk avoid:

Crowded spaces
Close proximity to others
Low ventilation environments
Long durations
Places where people are not wearing masks
Talking, and especially loud talking / shouting / singing
High breathing rates (e.g., indoor aerobic exercise)

Each one of these features potentially increases the aerosol concentration you might inhale indoors. So if you must enter one of the above situations, complete your tasks as quickly as possible to reduce your exposure duration and risk.

\n\n\n

And of course, as always, wear a f**k'n face mask!

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

A group of scientists have written up a Google Doc of advice for the public in a FAQ on Protecting Yourself from COVID-19 Aerosol Transmission.

\n\n

The goal of these FAQs is to provide information to the general public in an efficient manner about how to prevent aerosol transmission of COVID-19, with the hope that this will allow more informed decision making by individuals or organizations. All of this information has been posted in Twitter and other forums, but can be difficult to find. Having multiple experts working together, and having the ability to update this information also improves its quality. These FAQs represent our best understanding at this time, and should always be similar or more stringent than information provided by CDC, WHO, and most regional & local health authorities. If your authority has a more stringent guideline than discussed here, follow that more stringent guideline.

\n\n\n

From the most important actionable take away form the FAQ:

\n\n

3.5. How can I protect myself from aerosol transmission indoors?
We can never be perfectly safe, only safer. Hence, we need to take as many steps as possible to reduce the risk of our activities. You should try to avoid or reduce as much as possible situations that facilitate inhaling the “smoke” (exhaled air) from others. To reduce risk avoid:

Crowded spaces
Close proximity to others
Low ventilation environments
Long durations
Places where people are not wearing masks
Talking, and especially loud talking / shouting / singing
High breathing rates (e.g., indoor aerobic exercise)

Each one of these features potentially increases the aerosol concentration you might inhale indoors. So if you must enter one of the above situations, complete your tasks as quickly as possible to reduce your exposure duration and risk.

\n\n\n

And of course, as always, wear a f**k'n face mask!

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/09/17/us-judge-blocks-postal-service-changes/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/09/17/us-judge-blocks-postal-service-changes/", "title": "US Judge blocks postal service changes", "date_published": "2020-09-17T18:52:53-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-09-17T18:52:53-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

A US judge on Thursday blocked controversial Postal Service changes that have slowed mail nationwide, calling them “a politically motivated attack on the efficiency of the Postal Service” before the November election.

Judge Stanley Bastian said he was issuing a nationwide preliminary injunction sought by 14 states that sued the Trump administration and the US Postal Service.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

A US judge on Thursday blocked controversial Postal Service changes that have slowed mail nationwide, calling them “a politically motivated attack on the efficiency of the Postal Service” before the November election.

Judge Stanley Bastian said he was issuing a nationwide preliminary injunction sought by 14 states that sued the Trump administration and the US Postal Service.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/09/15/scientific-american-endorses-joe-biden/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/09/15/scientific-american-endorses-joe-biden/", "title": "Scientific American Endorses Joe Biden", "date_published": "2020-09-15T20:34:00-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-09-15T20:34:00-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n
\nFrom the editors of Scientific American:

\n\n

Scientific American has never endorsed a presidential candidate in its 175-year history. This year we are compelled to do so. We do not do this lightly.

The evidence and the science show that Donald Trump has badly damaged the U.S. and its people—because he rejects evidence and science. The most devastating example is his dishonest and inept response to the COVID-19 pandemic, which cost more than 190,000 Americans their lives by the middle of September. He has also attacked environmental protections, medical care, and the researchers and public science agencies that help this country prepare for its greatest challenges. That is why we urge you to vote for Joe Biden, who is offering fact-based plans to protect our health, our economy and the environment. These and other proposals he has put forth can set the country back on course for a safer, more prosperous and more equitable future.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n
\nFrom the editors of Scientific American:

\n\n

Scientific American has never endorsed a presidential candidate in its 175-year history. This year we are compelled to do so. We do not do this lightly.

The evidence and the science show that Donald Trump has badly damaged the U.S. and its people—because he rejects evidence and science. The most devastating example is his dishonest and inept response to the COVID-19 pandemic, which cost more than 190,000 Americans their lives by the middle of September. He has also attacked environmental protections, medical care, and the researchers and public science agencies that help this country prepare for its greatest challenges. That is why we urge you to vote for Joe Biden, who is offering fact-based plans to protect our health, our economy and the environment. These and other proposals he has put forth can set the country back on course for a safer, more prosperous and more equitable future.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/09/13/apocalyptic-red-western-skies/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/09/13/apocalyptic-red-western-skies/", "title": "Blade Runner 2020: San Francisco", "date_published": "2020-09-13T21:38:46-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-09-13T21:38:46-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

I didn’t know there was a prequel..

\n\n

All day yesterday, my social media feeds were full of photos taken of the skies on the west coast, bloodied red and orange from the wildfires raging in California, Oregon, and other western states. Each fresh photo I saw shocked me anew. Friends told me: as weird as the photos look, they don’t do justice to what this actually looks like and feels like in real life. Automatic cameras (as on smartphones) had a tough time capturing the skies because the onboard software kept correcting the red and orange colors out — the phones know, even if climate change denying politicians and voters don’t, that our skies aren’t supposed to be that color.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

I didn’t know there was a prequel..

\n\n

All day yesterday, my social media feeds were full of photos taken of the skies on the west coast, bloodied red and orange from the wildfires raging in California, Oregon, and other western states. Each fresh photo I saw shocked me anew. Friends told me: as weird as the photos look, they don’t do justice to what this actually looks like and feels like in real life. Automatic cameras (as on smartphones) had a tough time capturing the skies because the onboard software kept correcting the red and orange colors out — the phones know, even if climate change denying politicians and voters don’t, that our skies aren’t supposed to be that color.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/09/13/i-need-my-feet-to-stand-up/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/09/13/i-need-my-feet-to-stand-up/", "title": "I need my feet to stand up", "date_published": "2020-09-13T16:44:30-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-09-13T16:44:30-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n



\nWhen asked why he hardly uses pedals - Keith Richards, in his usual witty way, offers some sage advice all of us aspiring musicians should take to heart.

\n\n

As aware as I am that I was the bugger that started the foot pedal with Satisfaction, to me, that was a one of effect. I am not gonna go around on stage doing tip toes on different machines. I expect my sound to coming out of my amp and I don't wanna change it once its there. I am not fancy. I need my feet to stand up.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n



\nWhen asked why he hardly uses pedals - Keith Richards, in his usual witty way, offers some sage advice all of us aspiring musicians should take to heart.

\n\n

As aware as I am that I was the bugger that started the foot pedal with Satisfaction, to me, that was a one of effect. I am not gonna go around on stage doing tip toes on different machines. I expect my sound to coming out of my amp and I don't wanna change it once its there. I am not fancy. I need my feet to stand up.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/09/04/donald-trump-unfit-to-be-commander-in-chief/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/09/04/donald-trump-unfit-to-be-commander-in-chief/", "title": "Donald Trump is a coward", "date_published": "2020-09-04T15:59:18-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-09-04T15:59:18-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Jeffrey Goldberg in a shocking article for the Atlantic

\n\n

When President Donald Trump canceled a visit to the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery near Paris in 2018, he blamed rain for the last-minute decision, saying that “the helicopter couldn’t fly” and that the Secret Service wouldn’t drive him there. Neither claim was true.

Trump rejected the idea of the visit because he feared his hair would become disheveled in the rain, and because he did not believe it important to honor American war dead, according to four people with firsthand knowledge of the discussion that day. In a conversation with senior staff members on the morning of the scheduled visit, Trump said, “Why should I go to that cemetery? It’s filled with losers.” In a separate conversation on the same trip, Trump referred to the more than 1,800 marines who lost their lives at Belleau Wood as “suckers” for getting killed.

\n\n\n

Trump is a narcisist born of privilege who dodged the draft 5 times during the Vietnam war. For him to call the fallen veterans ‘Losers’ and ‘Suckers’ just shows what a sorry, selfish, cowardly excuse Donal Trump is for a man.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Jeffrey Goldberg in a shocking article for the Atlantic

\n\n

When President Donald Trump canceled a visit to the Aisne-Marne American Cemetery near Paris in 2018, he blamed rain for the last-minute decision, saying that “the helicopter couldn’t fly” and that the Secret Service wouldn’t drive him there. Neither claim was true.

Trump rejected the idea of the visit because he feared his hair would become disheveled in the rain, and because he did not believe it important to honor American war dead, according to four people with firsthand knowledge of the discussion that day. In a conversation with senior staff members on the morning of the scheduled visit, Trump said, “Why should I go to that cemetery? It’s filled with losers.” In a separate conversation on the same trip, Trump referred to the more than 1,800 marines who lost their lives at Belleau Wood as “suckers” for getting killed.

\n\n\n

Trump is a narcisist born of privilege who dodged the draft 5 times during the Vietnam war. For him to call the fallen veterans ‘Losers’ and ‘Suckers’ just shows what a sorry, selfish, cowardly excuse Donal Trump is for a man.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/09/03/trump-facist-drawings/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/09/03/trump-facist-drawings/", "title": "Trump Facist Drawings", "date_published": "2020-09-03T13:07:52-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-09-03T13:07:52-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

\n\n

Chris Piascik has updated Godal’s drawings for 2020 to feature our own corrupt crackpot wannabe dictator. Calling Donald Trump a fascist is hardly controversial these days — he clearly is. What his supporters need to reckon with is: are they?

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

\n\n

Chris Piascik has updated Godal’s drawings for 2020 to feature our own corrupt crackpot wannabe dictator. Calling Donald Trump a fascist is hardly controversial these days — he clearly is. What his supporters need to reckon with is: are they?

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/09/01/rise-of-the-right/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/09/01/rise-of-the-right/", "title": "Like The monster in a Godzilla movie", "date_published": "2020-09-01T00:49:07-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-09-01T00:49:07-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\nRick Perlstein, author of the new book Reganland speaks with Walter Isaacson about how this sequence of events led to the current political climate in America. This interview is the best explanation of Trumpism came to be and what motivates it I have heard.

\n\n

From the interview:

\n\n

Pundits are always declaring, you know, conservatism a dead letter in American politics after liberals win and it never is. Right? It always comes back like the monster in a Godzilla movie you know. And the process I describe in all these books is the weaponization of the fear, the resentment and the anxiety about the social changes that are happening in America that eventually become excepted as part of American life. But when they are introduced to the scene like the idea that gays and lesbians should have the same rites as everyone else, they are terrified. And you can kind of use that terror to kind of frighten people into voting for candidates who come into office and do things like, you know, cut taxes for corporations. Thats a playbook that they have run again and again and again that reaches its modern apotheoses with Ronald Regan and is repeated again and again.

\n\n

\n\n

The Republicans refused to have a platform, they basically said our platform is supporting Donald Trump. So you know there is nothing wrong with being a conservative right? And there is nothing wrong with respecting the fears people have about social change. I think the challenge of leadership in a diverse and pluralist society is to respect the necessity of change but also kind of calm people’s fears about anxieties change brings.

\n\n

And regarding the weaponization of resentment:

\n\n

Thats the theme of my book Nixon Land, in which the figure at the center Nixon basically forms a social club for all the nerds at his college you know. Kind of weaponizes their resentment of the cool kids who are in the fancy fraternity. That becomes his political template. The nerds in his college fraternity become the silent majority in his famous speech of 1969. Its Sarah Palin talking about how these cosmopolitan intellectuals are trying to tell you that they are all more smart than you are - but really, you are the smart one. That sort of resentment at liberal culture elites. As opposed to the resentment the Democrats have traditionally mobilized for the working class and their resentment of their bosses - who are kind of telling what to do at the workplace is absolutely central to conservatism becoming a popular movement.

\n\n

It all comes back to Nixon….

\n\n

The best 20 minutes you will spend if you want to understand why we are where we are in the United States.

\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\nRick Perlstein, author of the new book Reganland speaks with Walter Isaacson about how this sequence of events led to the current political climate in America. This interview is the best explanation of Trumpism came to be and what motivates it I have heard.

\n\n

From the interview:

\n\n

Pundits are always declaring, you know, conservatism a dead letter in American politics after liberals win and it never is. Right? It always comes back like the monster in a Godzilla movie you know. And the process I describe in all these books is the weaponization of the fear, the resentment and the anxiety about the social changes that are happening in America that eventually become excepted as part of American life. But when they are introduced to the scene like the idea that gays and lesbians should have the same rites as everyone else, they are terrified. And you can kind of use that terror to kind of frighten people into voting for candidates who come into office and do things like, you know, cut taxes for corporations. Thats a playbook that they have run again and again and again that reaches its modern apotheoses with Ronald Regan and is repeated again and again.

\n\n

\n\n

The Republicans refused to have a platform, they basically said our platform is supporting Donald Trump. So you know there is nothing wrong with being a conservative right? And there is nothing wrong with respecting the fears people have about social change. I think the challenge of leadership in a diverse and pluralist society is to respect the necessity of change but also kind of calm people’s fears about anxieties change brings.

\n\n

And regarding the weaponization of resentment:

\n\n

Thats the theme of my book Nixon Land, in which the figure at the center Nixon basically forms a social club for all the nerds at his college you know. Kind of weaponizes their resentment of the cool kids who are in the fancy fraternity. That becomes his political template. The nerds in his college fraternity become the silent majority in his famous speech of 1969. Its Sarah Palin talking about how these cosmopolitan intellectuals are trying to tell you that they are all more smart than you are - but really, you are the smart one. That sort of resentment at liberal culture elites. As opposed to the resentment the Democrats have traditionally mobilized for the working class and their resentment of their bosses - who are kind of telling what to do at the workplace is absolutely central to conservatism becoming a popular movement.

\n\n

It all comes back to Nixon….

\n\n

The best 20 minutes you will spend if you want to understand why we are where we are in the United States.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/08/29/trump-failed/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/08/29/trump-failed/", "title": "Trump Failed 180,000+ Died", "date_published": "2020-08-29T01:12:37-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-08-29T01:12:37-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Joe Berkowits in an article Fast Company:

\n\n

Watching the endless parade of speakers across the past four nights, one would scarcely piece together the fact that 181,000 Americans and counting have died from COVID-19. One might not realize that this level of death was far from assured, that the U.S. mortality rate, as a proportion of the population, is among the 10 highest in the world. One certainly would not know that President Trump dismissed early calls for action as a political maneuver from the Democrats, regularly suggested the virus would just go away “like a miracle” as recently as this past month, left sweeping decisions up to the governors of each state, and sent contradictory messages such as “LIBERATE MICHIGAN” to a scared populace unsure whether the lockdown was working or not. (It was.)

The convention speakers painted a picture of the coronavirus as an all-but-conquered foe, for whose defeat we have Donald Trump to thank. This image corresponded perfectly with the victory fireworks Trump’s team blasted off in the wake of his convention-closing speech.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Joe Berkowits in an article Fast Company:

\n\n

Watching the endless parade of speakers across the past four nights, one would scarcely piece together the fact that 181,000 Americans and counting have died from COVID-19. One might not realize that this level of death was far from assured, that the U.S. mortality rate, as a proportion of the population, is among the 10 highest in the world. One certainly would not know that President Trump dismissed early calls for action as a political maneuver from the Democrats, regularly suggested the virus would just go away “like a miracle” as recently as this past month, left sweeping decisions up to the governors of each state, and sent contradictory messages such as “LIBERATE MICHIGAN” to a scared populace unsure whether the lockdown was working or not. (It was.)

The convention speakers painted a picture of the coronavirus as an all-but-conquered foe, for whose defeat we have Donald Trump to thank. This image corresponded perfectly with the victory fireworks Trump’s team blasted off in the wake of his convention-closing speech.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/08/27/impunity/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/08/27/impunity/", "title": "Flaunting Impunity", "date_published": "2020-08-27T22:51:24-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-08-27T22:51:24-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n

\n\n

David A. Graham in The Atlantic:

\n\n

Incumbent presidents have two goals for their renomination convention: Show voters what they’ve achieved in their first four years, and tell them what they want to do with another four.

Donald Trump and his Republican Party have skipped the second part—the president has repeatedly whiffed on articulating a second-term agenda, and the Republican National Convention has decided not to bother with a platform. As for achievements, the administration has little to go on there, either. Most of Trump’s 2016 agenda remains incomplete, stalled, or never begun, while the economy is in a tailspin and nearly 180,000 Americans have died from COVID-19.

Yet Trump is using the RNC to show the nation what he has learned over the past four years: the power of impunity. Throughout the convention, Trump, his family, and his aides are using the backdrop of the federal government, in defiance of precedent, propriety, and likely federal law. The president is not so much showing the majesty of the federal government—this is not its finest hour—as reveling in the knowledge that no one can or will stop him. It is a flex for its own sake, and at heart, that is his message about what he will deliver in a second term, too.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n

\n\n

David A. Graham in The Atlantic:

\n\n

Incumbent presidents have two goals for their renomination convention: Show voters what they’ve achieved in their first four years, and tell them what they want to do with another four.

Donald Trump and his Republican Party have skipped the second part—the president has repeatedly whiffed on articulating a second-term agenda, and the Republican National Convention has decided not to bother with a platform. As for achievements, the administration has little to go on there, either. Most of Trump’s 2016 agenda remains incomplete, stalled, or never begun, while the economy is in a tailspin and nearly 180,000 Americans have died from COVID-19.

Yet Trump is using the RNC to show the nation what he has learned over the past four years: the power of impunity. Throughout the convention, Trump, his family, and his aides are using the backdrop of the federal government, in defiance of precedent, propriety, and likely federal law. The president is not so much showing the majesty of the federal government—this is not its finest hour—as reveling in the knowledge that no one can or will stop him. It is a flex for its own sake, and at heart, that is his message about what he will deliver in a second term, too.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/08/26/the-cult-of-trump/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/08/26/the-cult-of-trump/", "title": "The cult of trump", "date_published": "2020-08-26T00:22:21-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-08-26T00:22:21-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

One thing that is obvious is that the Republican party no longer supports any positions - only what Trump tell them to support. History will remember this years Republican convention as the moment when the Republican party ceased to be a political party, instead turning into a cult. The cult of Donal Trump.

\n\n

Ezra Klein in an article for Vox sums it up best:

\n\n

I have covered American politics for two decades and never have I seen a party more ferociously committed to supporting whatever it is their leader tells them to support.

The problem for Republicans is that the main thing Trump has told them to support is himself. There are no detailed policy proposals, much less a coherent ideology or set of governing principles. And so speech after speech followed the same template: How was America going to stop the coronavirus? By reelecting Donald Trump. How was it going to revive its economy? By reelecting Donald Trump. How was it going to ensure domestic harmony? By reelecting Donald Trump.

The contradiction at the heart of the convention, of course, is that Donald Trump is currently president. I’m dead serious. How would reelecting Trump resolve these crises that Trump has proven unable to resolve — and has, in many cases, worsened — in office? No one even took a shot at that Rubik’s cube. Instead, the speakers awkwardly talked around the fact of Trump’s incumbency. He was presented, strangely, as both incumbent and challenger; the man who had fixed America’s problems, but also the man needed to fix an America beset by more problems than ever.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

One thing that is obvious is that the Republican party no longer supports any positions - only what Trump tell them to support. History will remember this years Republican convention as the moment when the Republican party ceased to be a political party, instead turning into a cult. The cult of Donal Trump.

\n\n

Ezra Klein in an article for Vox sums it up best:

\n\n

I have covered American politics for two decades and never have I seen a party more ferociously committed to supporting whatever it is their leader tells them to support.

The problem for Republicans is that the main thing Trump has told them to support is himself. There are no detailed policy proposals, much less a coherent ideology or set of governing principles. And so speech after speech followed the same template: How was America going to stop the coronavirus? By reelecting Donald Trump. How was it going to revive its economy? By reelecting Donald Trump. How was it going to ensure domestic harmony? By reelecting Donald Trump.

The contradiction at the heart of the convention, of course, is that Donald Trump is currently president. I’m dead serious. How would reelecting Trump resolve these crises that Trump has proven unable to resolve — and has, in many cases, worsened — in office? No one even took a shot at that Rubik’s cube. Instead, the speakers awkwardly talked around the fact of Trump’s incumbency. He was presented, strangely, as both incumbent and challenger; the man who had fixed America’s problems, but also the man needed to fix an America beset by more problems than ever.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/08/24/rebpublicans-think-covid-19-deaths-acceptable/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/08/24/rebpublicans-think-covid-19-deaths-acceptable/", "title": "Republicans think Covid-19 Deaths 'Acceptable'", "date_published": "2020-08-24T16:01:12-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-08-24T16:01:12-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Washington Post columnist Brian Klass documents deaths reported by various countries:

\n\n
\n

Sunday update
Covid-19 deaths, yesterday:

Italy: 3
France: 9
Japan: 14
Canada: 7
UK: 18
Germany: 3

United States: 974

Population of countries above: 439 million
Population of United States: 328 million

— Brian Klaas (@brianklaas) August 23, 2020
\n
\n\n\n

It is almost over in the six countries reported above. While in the US the Covid-19 virus is raging averaging 1000 deaths per day.

\n\n

But what is even more shocking is that 57 percent of Repbulicans think that Covid-19 deaths are acceptable:

\n\n

From a CBS News survey of over 2,000 registered voters:

\n\n

Number of U.S. deaths from coronavirus has been been acceptable / unacceptable:

\n\n\n

This leads me to conclude that either a majority of Republicans are sociopaths or they’re so ignorant they have no idea how much worse the U.S. has handled COVID-19 than other industrialized nations.

\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Washington Post columnist Brian Klass documents deaths reported by various countries:

\n\n
\n

Sunday update
Covid-19 deaths, yesterday:

Italy: 3
France: 9
Japan: 14
Canada: 7
UK: 18
Germany: 3

United States: 974

Population of countries above: 439 million
Population of United States: 328 million

— Brian Klaas (@brianklaas) August 23, 2020
\n
\n\n\n

It is almost over in the six countries reported above. While in the US the Covid-19 virus is raging averaging 1000 deaths per day.

\n\n

But what is even more shocking is that 57 percent of Repbulicans think that Covid-19 deaths are acceptable:

\n\n

From a CBS News survey of over 2,000 registered voters:

\n\n

Number of U.S. deaths from coronavirus has been been acceptable / unacceptable:

\n\n\n

This leads me to conclude that either a majority of Republicans are sociopaths or they’re so ignorant they have no idea how much worse the U.S. has handled COVID-19 than other industrialized nations.

\n\n\n\n\n\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/08/24/kellyanne-conway-resigns/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/08/24/kellyanne-conway-resigns/", "title": "Less Drama more Mama", "date_published": "2020-08-24T15:34:12-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-08-24T15:34:12-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

With the Trump campaign falling apart, Keyllyanne Conway resigns. Not surprising, Kellyanne Conway is not dumb. The whole ‘will leave her position at the end of the month to focus on her family’ thing is a convenient out.

\n\n

Kellyanne Conwway did something that most thought impossible. As campaign manager she brilliantly got Trump elected. If she stepped down afterwords, she could have had a brilliant future. But with all the lying, here career is pretty much over.

\n\n

Then again this is politics…

\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

With the Trump campaign falling apart, Keyllyanne Conway resigns. Not surprising, Kellyanne Conway is not dumb. The whole ‘will leave her position at the end of the month to focus on her family’ thing is a convenient out.

\n\n

Kellyanne Conwway did something that most thought impossible. As campaign manager she brilliantly got Trump elected. If she stepped down afterwords, she could have had a brilliant future. But with all the lying, here career is pretty much over.

\n\n

Then again this is politics…

\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/08/19/michelle-obama-makes-the-case-for-against-trump/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/08/19/michelle-obama-makes-the-case-for-against-trump/", "title": "Michelle Obama Makes the Case against Trump", "date_published": "2020-08-19T23:55:25-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-08-19T23:55:25-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Former first lady Michelle Obama tearing into Trump - using his own words against him.

\n\n
\n\n\n



\n\n

So let me be as honest and clear as I possibly can. Donald Trump is the wrong president for our country. He has had more than enough time to prove that he can do the job, but he is clearly in over his head. He cannot meet this moment. He simply cannot be who we need him to be for us. It is what it is.

Now, I understand that my message won’t be heard by some people. We live in a nation that is deeply divided, and I am a black woman speaking at the Democratic convention. But enough of you know me by now. You know that I tell you exactly what I’m feeling. You know I hate politics. But you also know that I care about this nation. You know how much I care about all of our children.

So if you take one thing from my words tonight, it is this: if you think things cannot possibly get worse, trust me, they can, and they will if we don’t make a change in this election. If we have any hope of ending this chaos, we have got to vote for Joe Biden like our lives depend on it.

...

We’ve got to vote early, in person if we can. We’ve got to request our mail-in ballots right now, tonight, and send them back immediately and follow up to make sure they’re received. And then, make sure our friends and families do the same.

We have got to grab our comfortable shoes, put on our masks, pack a brown-bag dinner and maybe breakfast too, because we’ve got to be willing to stand in line all night if we have to.

\n\n\n

Full transcript of the speech here.

\n", "content_html": "

Former first lady Michelle Obama tearing into Trump - using his own words against him.

\n\n
\n\n\n



\n\n

So let me be as honest and clear as I possibly can. Donald Trump is the wrong president for our country. He has had more than enough time to prove that he can do the job, but he is clearly in over his head. He cannot meet this moment. He simply cannot be who we need him to be for us. It is what it is.

Now, I understand that my message won’t be heard by some people. We live in a nation that is deeply divided, and I am a black woman speaking at the Democratic convention. But enough of you know me by now. You know that I tell you exactly what I’m feeling. You know I hate politics. But you also know that I care about this nation. You know how much I care about all of our children.

So if you take one thing from my words tonight, it is this: if you think things cannot possibly get worse, trust me, they can, and they will if we don’t make a change in this election. If we have any hope of ending this chaos, we have got to vote for Joe Biden like our lives depend on it.

...

We’ve got to vote early, in person if we can. We’ve got to request our mail-in ballots right now, tonight, and send them back immediately and follow up to make sure they’re received. And then, make sure our friends and families do the same.

We have got to grab our comfortable shoes, put on our masks, pack a brown-bag dinner and maybe breakfast too, because we’ve got to be willing to stand in line all night if we have to.

\n\n\n

Full transcript of the speech here.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/08/19/toyota-upload-driver-data-to-amazon/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/08/19/toyota-upload-driver-data-to-amazon/", "title": "Toyota to upload driver data to Amazon", "date_published": "2020-08-19T23:27:13-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-08-19T23:27:13-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Toyota has expanded its collaboration with Amazon Web Services by allowing auto-makers to upload performance data to the Amazon cloud.

\n\n

\n\n

Official blurb from Toyota about it’s Mobilty Platform says it will offer:

\n\n

new contextual services such as car share, rideshare, full-service lease, and new corporate and consumer services such as proactive vehicle maintenance notifications and driving behavior-based insurance.

\n\n

This is a shameless assault on consumer privacy. While the pitch will be to allow savings on insurance plan, I highly dought it. Most likely result of this is a restructuring of those plans to produce even more profit at the expense of driver rights.

\n", "content_html": "

Toyota has expanded its collaboration with Amazon Web Services by allowing auto-makers to upload performance data to the Amazon cloud.

\n\n

\n\n

Official blurb from Toyota about it’s Mobilty Platform says it will offer:

\n\n

new contextual services such as car share, rideshare, full-service lease, and new corporate and consumer services such as proactive vehicle maintenance notifications and driving behavior-based insurance.

\n\n

This is a shameless assault on consumer privacy. While the pitch will be to allow savings on insurance plan, I highly dought it. Most likely result of this is a restructuring of those plans to produce even more profit at the expense of driver rights.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/08/15/and-were-scared-of-socialism/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/08/15/and-were-scared-of-socialism/", "title": "And we're scared of Democratic Socialism", "date_published": "2020-08-15T09:53:06-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-08-15T09:53:06-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n

While Americans were so worried Socialism would take their freedoms, Capitalism stole their pensions, took their savings, sent jobs overseas, robbed their health care, dismantled the educational system, & put them in debt, leaving them only their racism, xenophobia, hate, & Trump

— TheLuckyHeron 🌍 (@LuckyHeronSay) August 14, 2020
\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "
\n

While Americans were so worried Socialism would take their freedoms, Capitalism stole their pensions, took their savings, sent jobs overseas, robbed their health care, dismantled the educational system, & put them in debt, leaving them only their racism, xenophobia, hate, & Trump

— TheLuckyHeron 🌍 (@LuckyHeronSay) August 14, 2020
\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/08/12/the-future-face-of-american-politics/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/08/12/the-future-face-of-american-politics/", "title": "the future face of american politics", "date_published": "2020-08-12T09:52:32-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-08-12T09:52:32-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Manisha Sina in the New York Times opinion essay on what Biden’s pick for a VP means for the future of American politics:

\n\n

Like most Democrats, I support Joe Biden because the country can ill afford the continuation of the “American carnage” that Mr. Trump ironically claimed he would end in his Inaugural Address. Mr. Biden’s big tent policy, his adoption of progressive policies championed by his opponents, and his promise to select a woman candidate for the vice presidency, sealed the deal for me. Mr. Biden had the luck to choose from an array of talented women. His decision to pick Kamala Harris as his running mate seems like a personal gift to me. Not only does she represent the very groups mocked and vilified by Mr. Trump: women, Black people and immigrants, but also, as a woman of Afro-Indian descent she might well be the future face of American politics.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Manisha Sina in the New York Times opinion essay on what Biden’s pick for a VP means for the future of American politics:

\n\n

Like most Democrats, I support Joe Biden because the country can ill afford the continuation of the “American carnage” that Mr. Trump ironically claimed he would end in his Inaugural Address. Mr. Biden’s big tent policy, his adoption of progressive policies championed by his opponents, and his promise to select a woman candidate for the vice presidency, sealed the deal for me. Mr. Biden had the luck to choose from an array of talented women. His decision to pick Kamala Harris as his running mate seems like a personal gift to me. Not only does she represent the very groups mocked and vilified by Mr. Trump: women, Black people and immigrants, but also, as a woman of Afro-Indian descent she might well be the future face of American politics.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/08/10/the-tech-industry-needs-regulation/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/08/10/the-tech-industry-needs-regulation/", "title": "The Tech industry needs regulation", "date_published": "2020-08-10T01:52:00-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-08-10T01:52:00-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

About two years ago, Microsoft publicly asked a question for the first time: “Should there be a Hippocratic Oath for software developers creating AI systems the way there is for doctors?”


You can’t graduate from the Air Force Academy without taking an ethics course. In the military, there is a code of justice and there are people whose sole job is to make sure this code is followed, even though this doesn’t mean that the military makes no mistakes.


There are no common ethics codes to determine how lethal autonomous weapons and systems that are developed for the military should be used once they end up in the hands of civilians.


“In the top 10 Computer Science departments in the nation, there is only one that requires taking an ethics course to graduate. Ethics is a field that will have to get infused into Computer Science education. There should be a stand-alone course called Ethics for AI that every computer science major must take.”

\n\n\n

Maybe we should start with holding FAANG responsible with regulations that have real teeth before we ask developers to push back against them.

\n", "content_html": "

About two years ago, Microsoft publicly asked a question for the first time: “Should there be a Hippocratic Oath for software developers creating AI systems the way there is for doctors?”


You can’t graduate from the Air Force Academy without taking an ethics course. In the military, there is a code of justice and there are people whose sole job is to make sure this code is followed, even though this doesn’t mean that the military makes no mistakes.


There are no common ethics codes to determine how lethal autonomous weapons and systems that are developed for the military should be used once they end up in the hands of civilians.


“In the top 10 Computer Science departments in the nation, there is only one that requires taking an ethics course to graduate. Ethics is a field that will have to get infused into Computer Science education. There should be a stand-alone course called Ethics for AI that every computer science major must take.”

\n\n\n

Maybe we should start with holding FAANG responsible with regulations that have real teeth before we ask developers to push back against them.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/08/03/republicans-need-to-wake-up/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/08/03/republicans-need-to-wake-up/", "title": "Republicans need to wake up", "date_published": "2020-08-03T19:08:51-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-08-03T19:08:51-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Another powerful ad from The Lincoln Project - and how Trump supporters are in a state of denial.

\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Another powerful ad from The Lincoln Project - and how Trump supporters are in a state of denial.

\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/08/03/together-you-can-redeem-the-soul-of-our-nation/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/08/03/together-you-can-redeem-the-soul-of-our-nation/", "title": "Together, You Can Redeem the Soul of Our Nation", "date_published": "2020-08-03T01:30:10-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-08-03T01:30:10-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

In an essay by John Lewis - one of the “Big Six” leaders of groups who organized the 1963 March on Washington, and he fulfilled many key roles in the civil rights movement and its actions to end legalized racial segregation in the United States.

\n\n

Like so many young people today, I was searching for a way out, or some might say a way in, and then I heard the voice of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. on an old radio. He was talking about the philosophy and discipline of nonviolence. He said we are all complicit when we tolerate injustice. He said it is not enough to say it will get better by and by. He said each of us has a moral obligation to stand up, speak up and speak out. When you see something that is not right, you must say something. You must do something. Democracy is not a state. It is an act, and each generation must do its part to help build what we called the Beloved Community, a nation and world society at peace with itself.

Ordinary people with extraordinary vision can redeem the soul of America by getting in what I call good trouble, necessary trouble. Voting and participating in the democratic process are key. The vote is the most powerful nonviolent change agent you have in a democratic society. You must use it because it is not guaranteed. You can lose it.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

In an essay by John Lewis - one of the “Big Six” leaders of groups who organized the 1963 March on Washington, and he fulfilled many key roles in the civil rights movement and its actions to end legalized racial segregation in the United States.

\n\n

Like so many young people today, I was searching for a way out, or some might say a way in, and then I heard the voice of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. on an old radio. He was talking about the philosophy and discipline of nonviolence. He said we are all complicit when we tolerate injustice. He said it is not enough to say it will get better by and by. He said each of us has a moral obligation to stand up, speak up and speak out. When you see something that is not right, you must say something. You must do something. Democracy is not a state. It is an act, and each generation must do its part to help build what we called the Beloved Community, a nation and world society at peace with itself.

Ordinary people with extraordinary vision can redeem the soul of America by getting in what I call good trouble, necessary trouble. Voting and participating in the democratic process are key. The vote is the most powerful nonviolent change agent you have in a democratic society. You must use it because it is not guaranteed. You can lose it.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/07/31/policy-of-mass-human-sacrifice/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/07/31/policy-of-mass-human-sacrifice/", "title": "Policy of Mass Human Sacrifice", "date_published": "2020-07-31T21:53:12-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-07-31T21:53:12-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n



\n\n

We’re talking about losing our own people, but the Republicans double down. They’re just letting these people go. It’s like a policy of mass human sacrifice.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n



\n\n

We’re talking about losing our own people, but the Republicans double down. They’re just letting these people go. It’s like a policy of mass human sacrifice.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/07/24/two-ways-of-managing-the-pandemic/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/07/24/two-ways-of-managing-the-pandemic/", "title": "Two ways of managing the Pandemic", "date_published": "2020-07-24T19:36:27-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-07-24T19:36:27-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Recent picture of tour boats at the Niagra waterfalls show a people-laden vessel operated by US company Maid of the Mist sailing past a sparsely populated boat run by Canada’s Hornblower Niagara Cruises. The Maid of the Mist is operating at 50% occupancy under New York State’s rules, while the Hornblower vessel is limited to Ontario’s rules to just six passengers.

\n\n

The US has of this writing has 4.18 million cases as of and 148,000 deaths. Canada 113,000 caes with 8,800 deaths.

\n\n

Amanda Barnes of Brampton, Ontario sums it up:

\n\n

I’m glad I’m in Canada, You can see why the pandemic is raging in the United States and not in Canada when you look at the difference between the boats.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Recent picture of tour boats at the Niagra waterfalls show a people-laden vessel operated by US company Maid of the Mist sailing past a sparsely populated boat run by Canada’s Hornblower Niagara Cruises. The Maid of the Mist is operating at 50% occupancy under New York State’s rules, while the Hornblower vessel is limited to Ontario’s rules to just six passengers.

\n\n

The US has of this writing has 4.18 million cases as of and 148,000 deaths. Canada 113,000 caes with 8,800 deaths.

\n\n

Amanda Barnes of Brampton, Ontario sums it up:

\n\n

I’m glad I’m in Canada, You can see why the pandemic is raging in the United States and not in Canada when you look at the difference between the boats.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/07/24/alexandria-ocasio-cortez-on-ted-yoho-remarks/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/07/24/alexandria-ocasio-cortez-on-ted-yoho-remarks/", "title": "Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez on Ted Yoho Remarks", "date_published": "2020-07-24T19:06:02-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-07-24T19:06:02-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n



\nThis week Republican Representative Ted Yoho verbally accosted Democratic Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez at the Capital Building, calling her “disgusting”, “crazy”, and a “fucking bitch”. Ocasio-Cortez’s responding on the on the House floor:

\n\n

This is not new, and that is the problem. Mr. Yoho was not alone. He was walking shoulder to shoulder with Representative Roger Williams, and that’s when we start to see that this issue is not about one incident. It is cultural. It is a culture of lack of impunity, of accepting of violence and violent language against women, and an entire structure of power that supports that. Because not only have I been spoken to disrespectfully, particularly by members of the Republican Party and elected officials in the Republican Party, not just here, but the President of the United States last year told me to go home to another country, with the implication that I don’t even belong in America. The governor of Florida, Governor DeSantis, before I even was sworn in, called me a “whatever that is”. Dehumanizing language is not new, and what we are seeing is that incidents like these are happening in a pattern. This is a pattern of an attitude towards women and dehumanization of others.

[...]

I do not need Representative Yoho to apologize to me. Clearly he does not want to. Clearly when given the opportunity he will not and I will not stay up late at night waiting for an apology from a man who has no remorse over calling women and using abusive language towards women, but what I do have issue with is using women, our wives and daughters, as shields and excuses for poor behavior. Mr. Yoho mentioned that he has a wife and two daughters. I am two years younger than Mr. Yoho’s youngest daughter. I am someone’s daughter too. My father, thankfully, is not alive to see how Mr. Yoho treated his daughter. My mother got to see Mr. Yoho’s disrespect on the floor of this House towards me on television and I am here because I have to show my parents that I am their daughter and that they did not raise me to accept abuse from men.

\n\n\n

I can’t shake the feeling that were are witnessing a future will one day be the President of the United States in Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n



\nThis week Republican Representative Ted Yoho verbally accosted Democratic Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez at the Capital Building, calling her “disgusting”, “crazy”, and a “fucking bitch”. Ocasio-Cortez’s responding on the on the House floor:

\n\n

This is not new, and that is the problem. Mr. Yoho was not alone. He was walking shoulder to shoulder with Representative Roger Williams, and that’s when we start to see that this issue is not about one incident. It is cultural. It is a culture of lack of impunity, of accepting of violence and violent language against women, and an entire structure of power that supports that. Because not only have I been spoken to disrespectfully, particularly by members of the Republican Party and elected officials in the Republican Party, not just here, but the President of the United States last year told me to go home to another country, with the implication that I don’t even belong in America. The governor of Florida, Governor DeSantis, before I even was sworn in, called me a “whatever that is”. Dehumanizing language is not new, and what we are seeing is that incidents like these are happening in a pattern. This is a pattern of an attitude towards women and dehumanization of others.

[...]

I do not need Representative Yoho to apologize to me. Clearly he does not want to. Clearly when given the opportunity he will not and I will not stay up late at night waiting for an apology from a man who has no remorse over calling women and using abusive language towards women, but what I do have issue with is using women, our wives and daughters, as shields and excuses for poor behavior. Mr. Yoho mentioned that he has a wife and two daughters. I am two years younger than Mr. Yoho’s youngest daughter. I am someone’s daughter too. My father, thankfully, is not alive to see how Mr. Yoho treated his daughter. My mother got to see Mr. Yoho’s disrespect on the floor of this House towards me on television and I am here because I have to show my parents that I am their daughter and that they did not raise me to accept abuse from men.

\n\n\n

I can’t shake the feeling that were are witnessing a future will one day be the President of the United States in Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/07/23/software-replaces-models/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/07/23/software-replaces-models/", "title": "Software is Replacing models", "date_published": "2020-07-23T23:17:31-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-07-23T23:17:31-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Marc Andreessen wrote an essay in August of 2011 stating that software is eating the world. While we think this is true, most people view it in the services or infrastructure world. The average person has grown accustom to technology replacing things such as payments, maps, conferencing and other convenience industries and tasks.

\n\n

But what happens when software actually comes after talent/beauty/entertainment industry? These have long been thought as insulated from the digital onslaught because they are intrinsic human qualities. Surely an algorithm can’t replace an artist? Or a beautiful model?

\n\n

If there is one thing that I have learned, and in many ways, have helped accelerate - is that nothing is left out of the reach of technology. Especially software. Sinead Bovell for Vogue:

\n\n

Digital models and influencers are successfully breaking into the fashion industry from every angle. Some have even been signed to traditional modeling agencies. Take Miquela Sousa, a 19-year-old Brazilian American model, influencer, and now musician, who has amassed a loyal following of more than 2 million people on Instagram. She’s collaborated with Prada and Givenchy, has been featured in a Calvin Klein video with Bella Hadid, and she just released a song with singer-songwriter Teyana Taylor this past spring.

Impressive stuff, but there’s one thing that’s keeping real-life me at ease: Miquela, like Shudu, is a computer-generated image (CGI), not artificial intelligence (A.I.). That means that Miquela and Shudu can’t actually do anything on their own. They can’t think or learn or offer posing variations independently. But that won’t be the case for much longer.

[...]

But we human models have worked really hard to have our stories heard and our authentic experiences considered, and we’ve fought to change the perception that we are just a sample size or a prop for clothes. We’ve mobilized in groups, such as the Model Mafia network that I am a part of, to advocate for social issues and push back on exclusivity in the fashion industry. In some cases our activism has even cost us jobs. But now that we are finally starting to see changes in the industry, digital models can just land the jobs that we took risks for. Or worse, brands can just create CGIs that champion causes instead of actually having to invest in those causes themselves.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Marc Andreessen wrote an essay in August of 2011 stating that software is eating the world. While we think this is true, most people view it in the services or infrastructure world. The average person has grown accustom to technology replacing things such as payments, maps, conferencing and other convenience industries and tasks.

\n\n

But what happens when software actually comes after talent/beauty/entertainment industry? These have long been thought as insulated from the digital onslaught because they are intrinsic human qualities. Surely an algorithm can’t replace an artist? Or a beautiful model?

\n\n

If there is one thing that I have learned, and in many ways, have helped accelerate - is that nothing is left out of the reach of technology. Especially software. Sinead Bovell for Vogue:

\n\n

Digital models and influencers are successfully breaking into the fashion industry from every angle. Some have even been signed to traditional modeling agencies. Take Miquela Sousa, a 19-year-old Brazilian American model, influencer, and now musician, who has amassed a loyal following of more than 2 million people on Instagram. She’s collaborated with Prada and Givenchy, has been featured in a Calvin Klein video with Bella Hadid, and she just released a song with singer-songwriter Teyana Taylor this past spring.

Impressive stuff, but there’s one thing that’s keeping real-life me at ease: Miquela, like Shudu, is a computer-generated image (CGI), not artificial intelligence (A.I.). That means that Miquela and Shudu can’t actually do anything on their own. They can’t think or learn or offer posing variations independently. But that won’t be the case for much longer.

[...]

But we human models have worked really hard to have our stories heard and our authentic experiences considered, and we’ve fought to change the perception that we are just a sample size or a prop for clothes. We’ve mobilized in groups, such as the Model Mafia network that I am a part of, to advocate for social issues and push back on exclusivity in the fashion industry. In some cases our activism has even cost us jobs. But now that we are finally starting to see changes in the industry, digital models can just land the jobs that we took risks for. Or worse, brands can just create CGIs that champion causes instead of actually having to invest in those causes themselves.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/07/20/trump-moves-clinton-and-bush-portratits/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/07/20/trump-moves-clinton-and-bush-portratits/", "title": "Trump moves Clinton and Bush portratits", "date_published": "2020-07-20T06:06:56-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-07-20T06:06:56-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Tump removed the portraits of Bill Clinton and George W. Bush from entrance to the executive mansion into the Old Family Dining Room.

\n\n

John Gruber over at Daring Fireball:

\n\n

The story of these portraits, in itself, is not important. But what’s behind this petty insignificant-in-the-grand-scheme-of-events story is the same fundamental truth that is the cause of so many deeply important problems happening right now: Donald Trump has the small mind and emotional maturity of a petulant child.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Tump removed the portraits of Bill Clinton and George W. Bush from entrance to the executive mansion into the Old Family Dining Room.

\n\n

John Gruber over at Daring Fireball:

\n\n

The story of these portraits, in itself, is not important. But what’s behind this petty insignificant-in-the-grand-scheme-of-events story is the same fundamental truth that is the cause of so many deeply important problems happening right now: Donald Trump has the small mind and emotional maturity of a petulant child.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/07/20/the-butcher-of-the-valley/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/07/20/the-butcher-of-the-valley/", "title": "The Butcher of the Valley", "date_published": "2020-07-20T01:26:23-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-07-20T01:26:23-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Kara Swisher in an opinion piece for the NY Times:

\n\n

This week, I finally settled on a simpler comparison: Think about Facebook as a seller of meat products.

Most of the meat is produced by others, and some of the cuts are delicious and uncontaminated. But tainted meat — say, Trump steaks — also gets out the door in ever increasing amounts and without regulatory oversight.

The argument from the head butcher is this: People should be free to eat rotten hamburger, even if it wreaks havoc on their gastrointestinal tract, and the seller of the meat should not be the one to tell them which meat is good and which is bad (even though the butcher can tell in most cases).

Basically, the message is that you should find the truth through vomiting and — so sorry — maybe even death.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Kara Swisher in an opinion piece for the NY Times:

\n\n

This week, I finally settled on a simpler comparison: Think about Facebook as a seller of meat products.

Most of the meat is produced by others, and some of the cuts are delicious and uncontaminated. But tainted meat — say, Trump steaks — also gets out the door in ever increasing amounts and without regulatory oversight.

The argument from the head butcher is this: People should be free to eat rotten hamburger, even if it wreaks havoc on their gastrointestinal tract, and the seller of the meat should not be the one to tell them which meat is good and which is bad (even though the butcher can tell in most cases).

Basically, the message is that you should find the truth through vomiting and — so sorry — maybe even death.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/07/19/pharama-price-gouging/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/07/19/pharama-price-gouging/", "title": "Pharma Price Gouging", "date_published": "2020-07-19T17:20:57-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-07-19T17:20:57-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

From Sharon Lerner over at The Intercept

\n\n

The details of the contracts, which were released to the nonprofit advocacy group Knowledge Ecology International, come as another pharmaceutical company, Gilead Sciences, announced pricing for its Covid-19 therapy, remdesivir. That drug, which was developed with at least $79 million in federal funding, will cost private insurers $520 for a single vial, hundreds of times its production cost, which researchers at the University of Liverpool have estimated at 93 cents per dose.

In an open letter on pricing released Monday, Gilead chair and CEO Daniel O’Day said that “we approached this with the aim of helping as many patients as possible, as quickly as possible and in the most responsible way” and noted that in “normal circumstances,” the company would set the price according to the value a drug provides. Based on a study that shows that the hospital stays of patients who take remdesivir are four days shorter on average than those who didn’t take the drug, Gilead estimated that value to be $12,000.

But, given its low production cost, Gilead could profit from remdesivir even if it was priced at just $1 a day, according to an analysis by Public Citizen. Instead the drug, which was rolled out with the help of the Trump administration, will cost insurers between $3,120 for a five-day course of treatment and $5,720 for a 10-day course.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

From Sharon Lerner over at The Intercept

\n\n

The details of the contracts, which were released to the nonprofit advocacy group Knowledge Ecology International, come as another pharmaceutical company, Gilead Sciences, announced pricing for its Covid-19 therapy, remdesivir. That drug, which was developed with at least $79 million in federal funding, will cost private insurers $520 for a single vial, hundreds of times its production cost, which researchers at the University of Liverpool have estimated at 93 cents per dose.

In an open letter on pricing released Monday, Gilead chair and CEO Daniel O’Day said that “we approached this with the aim of helping as many patients as possible, as quickly as possible and in the most responsible way” and noted that in “normal circumstances,” the company would set the price according to the value a drug provides. Based on a study that shows that the hospital stays of patients who take remdesivir are four days shorter on average than those who didn’t take the drug, Gilead estimated that value to be $12,000.

But, given its low production cost, Gilead could profit from remdesivir even if it was priced at just $1 a day, according to an analysis by Public Citizen. Instead the drug, which was rolled out with the help of the Trump administration, will cost insurers between $3,120 for a five-day course of treatment and $5,720 for a 10-day course.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/07/19/covid-risk-chart/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/07/19/covid-risk-chart/", "title": "Covid Risk Chart", "date_published": "2020-07-19T16:58:48-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-07-19T16:58:48-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

The risk of contracting Covid-19 while performing common activities vs. the risk of doing stupid stuff. Via xkcd.

\n\n

\n", "content_html": "

The risk of contracting Covid-19 while performing common activities vs. the risk of doing stupid stuff. Via xkcd.

\n\n

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/07/15/find-something-new/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/07/15/find-something-new/", "title": "Find Something New", "date_published": "2020-07-15T00:06:01-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-07-15T00:06:01-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Ivanka Trump today introduced her new campaign to raise awareness in young people about the pathways that exist to find a career. For those who are unhappy in their jobs - to perhaps go out and find something new. Anyone see the irony of this campaign starting on Bastille Day?

\n\n
\n\n\n

Ivanka Trump, a person who has never had to apply for a job, started a company using her dad’s brand name and funding from Trump and the only reason why she holds the current job is because daddy is the President. This shows how completely detached they are from the everyday life of the average US Citizen. “Find Somthing New” - shows the long held belief by the elite wealthy class in this country that Americans are just lazy. If they would just go out and try to get a job - they would succeed.

\n\n

The problem is, for most people, THERE ARE NO JOBS. The government handed out $1200 dollar checks, and thats it. All of the protections are due to expire at the end of the month. Millions of people are about to be thrown out of their homes, loose their health insurance, and have themselves or family members infected with Covid.

\n\n

And what comes out of the Trump administration to help these citizens in a once in a lifetime economic and public health emergency? Find Something New. There is no money here, no policy, no jobs bill. This is just empty rhetoric.

\n\n

Ivanka Trump is the modern day Marie Antoinette, and instead of ‘Let them eat cake’, we have ‘Find Something New’.

\n\n

Yes. American citizens are going to Find Something New in November. A new President of the United States.

\n", "content_html": "

Ivanka Trump today introduced her new campaign to raise awareness in young people about the pathways that exist to find a career. For those who are unhappy in their jobs - to perhaps go out and find something new. Anyone see the irony of this campaign starting on Bastille Day?

\n\n
\n\n\n

Ivanka Trump, a person who has never had to apply for a job, started a company using her dad’s brand name and funding from Trump and the only reason why she holds the current job is because daddy is the President. This shows how completely detached they are from the everyday life of the average US Citizen. “Find Somthing New” - shows the long held belief by the elite wealthy class in this country that Americans are just lazy. If they would just go out and try to get a job - they would succeed.

\n\n

The problem is, for most people, THERE ARE NO JOBS. The government handed out $1200 dollar checks, and thats it. All of the protections are due to expire at the end of the month. Millions of people are about to be thrown out of their homes, loose their health insurance, and have themselves or family members infected with Covid.

\n\n

And what comes out of the Trump administration to help these citizens in a once in a lifetime economic and public health emergency? Find Something New. There is no money here, no policy, no jobs bill. This is just empty rhetoric.

\n\n

Ivanka Trump is the modern day Marie Antoinette, and instead of ‘Let them eat cake’, we have ‘Find Something New’.

\n\n

Yes. American citizens are going to Find Something New in November. A new President of the United States.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/07/10/us-is-diving-into-a-dark-covid-hole/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/07/10/us-is-diving-into-a-dark-covid-hole/", "title": "US is diving into a dark Covid hole", "date_published": "2020-07-10T15:48:17-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-07-10T15:48:17-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\nAny other president, with 130,000+ deaths and likely hitting 200,000 by September, would have put the power of the federal government behind quarantining measures, contract tracing and enforcing strict mask requirements.

\n\n

It is scary how dysfunctional and delusional our administration is in dealing with the Covid-19 outbreak. As reported by Stephen Collinson, this is administration is practicing willful, if not criminal, mismanagement of the pandemic.

\n\n

As the US plunges into an ever deeper coronavirus morass, setting record new infection rates and the death curve begins to rise again, there's no prospect of the nightmare ending for months.
Delusion dominates an administration that perversely claims the United States is the world leader in beating this modern day plague. There are only contradictions, obfuscations and confusion from the federal officials who ought to be charting a national course.

The massive integrated testing and tracing effort that could highlight and isolate infection epicenters doesn't exist. Attempts to reopen schools in a few weeks are already descending into farce amid conflicting messages from Washington.

Amid all of this, the coronavirus task force does not hold daily briefings, and when it does, they are an exercise in dodging difficult questions and self-congratulation.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\nAny other president, with 130,000+ deaths and likely hitting 200,000 by September, would have put the power of the federal government behind quarantining measures, contract tracing and enforcing strict mask requirements.

\n\n

It is scary how dysfunctional and delusional our administration is in dealing with the Covid-19 outbreak. As reported by Stephen Collinson, this is administration is practicing willful, if not criminal, mismanagement of the pandemic.

\n\n

As the US plunges into an ever deeper coronavirus morass, setting record new infection rates and the death curve begins to rise again, there's no prospect of the nightmare ending for months.
Delusion dominates an administration that perversely claims the United States is the world leader in beating this modern day plague. There are only contradictions, obfuscations and confusion from the federal officials who ought to be charting a national course.

The massive integrated testing and tracing effort that could highlight and isolate infection epicenters doesn't exist. Attempts to reopen schools in a few weeks are already descending into farce amid conflicting messages from Washington.

Amid all of this, the coronavirus task force does not hold daily briefings, and when it does, they are an exercise in dodging difficult questions and self-congratulation.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/07/10/largest-test-yet-of-universal-basic-income/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/07/10/largest-test-yet-of-universal-basic-income/", "title": "largest test yet of universal basic income", "date_published": "2020-07-10T12:21:23-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-07-10T12:21:23-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Spain's government has started what might just be remembered as the world’s biggest economics experiment. On 15 June, spurred by the coronavirus crisis and its economic fallout, it launched a website offering monthly payments of up to €1,015 (US$1,145) to the nation’s poorest families.

The programme, which will support 850,000 households, is the largest test yet of an idea called universal basic income (UBI) — where people are given a cash payment each month to spend however they choose. Oft-discussed but never satisfactorily tested, economists around the world are watching closely to see what the impact of the scheme on livelihoods will be.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Spain's government has started what might just be remembered as the world’s biggest economics experiment. On 15 June, spurred by the coronavirus crisis and its economic fallout, it launched a website offering monthly payments of up to €1,015 (US$1,145) to the nation’s poorest families.

The programme, which will support 850,000 households, is the largest test yet of an idea called universal basic income (UBI) — where people are given a cash payment each month to spend however they choose. Oft-discussed but never satisfactorily tested, economists around the world are watching closely to see what the impact of the scheme on livelihoods will be.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/07/10/us-strategy-herd-immunity/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/07/10/us-strategy-herd-immunity/", "title": "US Strategy: Herd Immunity", "date_published": "2020-07-10T09:56:35-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-07-10T09:56:35-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

By letting the coronavirus surge through the population with only minimal social distancing measures in place, the U.S. has accidentally become the world’s largest experiment in herd immunity.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

By letting the coronavirus surge through the population with only minimal social distancing measures in place, the U.S. has accidentally become the world’s largest experiment in herd immunity.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/07/09/u-dot-s-sunbelt-outbreak/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/07/09/u-dot-s-sunbelt-outbreak/", "title": "U.S. Sunbelt Outbreak", "date_published": "2020-07-09T23:56:16-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-07-09T23:56:16-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

There is no country in the world where confirmed coronavirus cases are growing as rapidly as they are in Arizona, Florida or South Carolina. The Sun Belt has become the global virus capital.

\n\n\n

\n", "content_html": "

There is no country in the world where confirmed coronavirus cases are growing as rapidly as they are in Arizona, Florida or South Carolina. The Sun Belt has become the global virus capital.

\n\n\n

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/07/09/acceptable-risk/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/07/09/acceptable-risk/", "title": "Acceptable Risk", "date_published": "2020-07-09T21:06:50-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-07-09T21:06:50-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Some of us are constantly running risk calculations in our heads for every little thing we do and don’t do during the course of the week during the pandemic.

\n\n

And IT’S EXHAUSTING.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Some of us are constantly running risk calculations in our heads for every little thing we do and don’t do during the course of the week during the pandemic.

\n\n

And IT’S EXHAUSTING.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/07/09/bill-nye-on-wearing-a-mask/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/07/09/bill-nye-on-wearing-a-mask/", "title": "Bill Nye on Wearing a Mask", "date_published": "2020-07-09T20:47:53-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-07-09T20:47:53-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Bill Nye on why you should wear a mask - brilliant as always.

\n\n

The reason we want you to wear a mask is to protect you, sure, but the main reason we want you to wear a mask to protect ME from YOU! And the particles from your respiratory system into my respiratory system. Everybody - this is literally a matter of life or death.\"

\n\n\n\n\n
\n\n\n


\n", "content_html": "

Bill Nye on why you should wear a mask - brilliant as always.

\n\n

The reason we want you to wear a mask is to protect you, sure, but the main reason we want you to wear a mask to protect ME from YOU! And the particles from your respiratory system into my respiratory system. Everybody - this is literally a matter of life or death.\"

\n\n\n\n\n
\n\n\n


\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/07/08/what-police-believe/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/07/08/what-police-believe/", "title": "What Police Believe", "date_published": "2020-07-08T13:23:30-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-07-08T13:23:30-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Vox’s Zack Beauchamp in What the police really believe

\n\n

Police officers across America have adopted a set of beliefs about their work and its role in our society. The tenets of police ideology are not codified or written down, but are nonetheless widely shared in departments around the country.

The ideology holds that the world is a profoundly dangerous place: Officers are conditioned to see themselves as constantly in danger and that the only way to guarantee survival is to dominate the citizens they’re supposed to protect. The police believe they’re alone in this fight; police ideology holds that officers are under siege by criminals and are not understood or respected by the broader citizenry. These beliefs, combined with widely held racial stereotypes, push officers toward violent and racist behavior during intense and stressful street interactions.

\n\n\n

This ideology in stark contrast to the stated mission statements of most Police departments. For example the New Jersey State Police mission statement:

\n\n

The New Jersey State Police is committed to protect, preserve, and safeguard the constitutional and civil rights of all citizens through impartial and courteous law enforcement with integrity and professionalism. We shall ensure public safety and provide quality service in partnership with our communities.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Vox’s Zack Beauchamp in What the police really believe

\n\n

Police officers across America have adopted a set of beliefs about their work and its role in our society. The tenets of police ideology are not codified or written down, but are nonetheless widely shared in departments around the country.

The ideology holds that the world is a profoundly dangerous place: Officers are conditioned to see themselves as constantly in danger and that the only way to guarantee survival is to dominate the citizens they’re supposed to protect. The police believe they’re alone in this fight; police ideology holds that officers are under siege by criminals and are not understood or respected by the broader citizenry. These beliefs, combined with widely held racial stereotypes, push officers toward violent and racist behavior during intense and stressful street interactions.

\n\n\n

This ideology in stark contrast to the stated mission statements of most Police departments. For example the New Jersey State Police mission statement:

\n\n

The New Jersey State Police is committed to protect, preserve, and safeguard the constitutional and civil rights of all citizens through impartial and courteous law enforcement with integrity and professionalism. We shall ensure public safety and provide quality service in partnership with our communities.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/07/08/chart-of-penguin-love/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/07/08/chart-of-penguin-love/", "title": "Chart of Penguin Love", "date_published": "2020-07-08T03:04:53-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-07-08T03:04:53-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Kyoto Aquarium and the Sumida Aquarium in Tokyo keep high-resolution maps that track the Penguins serious crushes and heartbreaks but also adultery and egg-stealing. Now this would make for an interesting reality show!

\n\n

Penguins, the way they waddle around and protect their eggs, are often thought of as cute, cuddly and romantic. But those who observe them for extended periods know they have a dark side. Two aquariums in Japan, Kyoto Aquarium and Sumida Aquarium, keep obsessive tabs on their penguins and maintain an updated flowchart that visualizes all their penguin drama.

As Kyoto-based researcher Oliver Jia points out, penguin drama can include serious crushes and heartbreaks but also adultery and egg-stealing. And these Japanese aquariums have it all charted in a flowchart that can be studied for hours.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Kyoto Aquarium and the Sumida Aquarium in Tokyo keep high-resolution maps that track the Penguins serious crushes and heartbreaks but also adultery and egg-stealing. Now this would make for an interesting reality show!

\n\n

Penguins, the way they waddle around and protect their eggs, are often thought of as cute, cuddly and romantic. But those who observe them for extended periods know they have a dark side. Two aquariums in Japan, Kyoto Aquarium and Sumida Aquarium, keep obsessive tabs on their penguins and maintain an updated flowchart that visualizes all their penguin drama.

As Kyoto-based researcher Oliver Jia points out, penguin drama can include serious crushes and heartbreaks but also adultery and egg-stealing. And these Japanese aquariums have it all charted in a flowchart that can be studied for hours.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/07/05/confirmed-cases-of-covid-19-in-us/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/07/05/confirmed-cases-of-covid-19-in-us/", "title": "Confirmed cases of Covid-19 in US", "date_published": "2020-07-05T23:54:08-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-07-05T23:54:08-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

The director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Anthony Fauci, told a Senate committee today that the US could be heading towards 100,000 new reported cases of Covid-19 per day.

\n\n

We’ve known for months (and epidemiologists and infectious disease experts have known for their entire careers) what works and yet the federal government and many state governments have not listened and, in some cases, have actively suppressed use of such measures. So the pandemic will continue to escalate in the United States until proper measures are put in place by governments and people follow them. The virus will not change, the mathematics will not change, so we must.

\n\n

Betting against math is stupid.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

The director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Anthony Fauci, told a Senate committee today that the US could be heading towards 100,000 new reported cases of Covid-19 per day.

\n\n

We’ve known for months (and epidemiologists and infectious disease experts have known for their entire careers) what works and yet the federal government and many state governments have not listened and, in some cases, have actively suppressed use of such measures. So the pandemic will continue to escalate in the United States until proper measures are put in place by governments and people follow them. The virus will not change, the mathematics will not change, so we must.

\n\n

Betting against math is stupid.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/07/05/national-humilation/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/07/05/national-humilation/", "title": "National Humilation", "date_published": "2020-07-05T23:06:11-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-07-05T23:06:11-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Chris Hayes on the US handling of Covid-19:

\n\n

The crisis we now find ourselves in is a human tragedy and an economic calamity. But it is also a singular national humiliation. We’re living through a moment where the U.S. is a laughing stock and a subject of pity around the world.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\n", "content_html": "

Chris Hayes on the US handling of Covid-19:

\n\n

The crisis we now find ourselves in is a human tragedy and an economic calamity. But it is also a singular national humiliation. We’re living through a moment where the U.S. is a laughing stock and a subject of pity around the world.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/06/25/american-exceptionalism-in-a-pandemic/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/06/25/american-exceptionalism-in-a-pandemic/", "title": "American Exceptionalism in a Pandemic", "date_published": "2020-06-25T22:31:21-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-06-25T22:31:21-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

The Covid-19 pandemic has shown the United States of America is exceptional.

\n\n\n\n\n

America is exceptional. Just not in the way we would like to believe.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

The Covid-19 pandemic has shown the United States of America is exceptional.

\n\n\n\n\n

America is exceptional. Just not in the way we would like to believe.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/06/24/republicans-trying-to-outlaw-encryption/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/06/24/republicans-trying-to-outlaw-encryption/", "title": "Republicans trying to outlaw encryption", "date_published": "2020-06-24T00:10:35-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-06-24T00:10:35-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Looks like the Republicans are at it again.

\n\n

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) and U.S. Senators Tom Cotton (R-Arkansas) and Marsha Blackburn (R-Tennessee) today introduced the Lawful Access to Encrypted Data Act, a bill to bolster national security interests and better protect communities across the country by ending the use of “warrant-proof” encrypted technology by terrorists and other bad actors to conceal illicit behavior.

\n\n\n

You can’t just “add a backdoor” to a proper end-to-end encryption scheme. A good encryption system has no backdoors - and you can prove it mathematically. The only people that have access to the plain text data are those that have the keys. Which is why we can trust it.

\n\n

By adding a mandatory “backdoor” to encryption, If there is such a “backdoor”, then anyone who has that key can access any data that is encrypted with that encryption algorightm. You are negating the very purpose of its existence.

\n\n

Under the current laws, you can issue a warrant for the key holder to give you access to that key. So this law is really not at all required, and would destroy all of the security in secure transactional systems.

\n\n

I am hoping this is just a political stunt by ignorant Senators.

\n", "content_html": "

Looks like the Republicans are at it again.

\n\n

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) and U.S. Senators Tom Cotton (R-Arkansas) and Marsha Blackburn (R-Tennessee) today introduced the Lawful Access to Encrypted Data Act, a bill to bolster national security interests and better protect communities across the country by ending the use of “warrant-proof” encrypted technology by terrorists and other bad actors to conceal illicit behavior.

\n\n\n

You can’t just “add a backdoor” to a proper end-to-end encryption scheme. A good encryption system has no backdoors - and you can prove it mathematically. The only people that have access to the plain text data are those that have the keys. Which is why we can trust it.

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By adding a mandatory “backdoor” to encryption, If there is such a “backdoor”, then anyone who has that key can access any data that is encrypted with that encryption algorightm. You are negating the very purpose of its existence.

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Under the current laws, you can issue a warrant for the key holder to give you access to that key. So this law is really not at all required, and would destroy all of the security in secure transactional systems.

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I am hoping this is just a political stunt by ignorant Senators.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/06/21/our-responsibility-is-to-pay-what-we-owe/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/06/21/our-responsibility-is-to-pay-what-we-owe/", "title": "our responsibility is to pay what we owe", "date_published": "2020-06-21T22:28:02-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-06-21T22:28:02-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

John Dikerson interviews CEO Tim Cook for Sunday Morning and asks Cook how he balances his fiduciary responsibility to paying as low taxes as possible and still be a good social citizen. Cook’s answer:

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Well, our responsibility is to pay what we owe, just plain and simple.

\n\n

Cook then goes on to talk about all the good that Apple does - citing their work on Covid-19. But that is a very small minded, and frankly, dishonest way to look at the situation. Did Apple donate important and meaningful aid and technology in the fight against Covid-19? Yes. Does that give them a right to pay lower taxes? No.

\n\n

Apple takes way more then it gives back - its not even close. Consider these facts:

\n\n\n\n\n

And what has allowed Apple to be so successful? The United States government. They provided the infrastructure, social and political stability, and the economic engine to make Apple a possibility in the first place. And Apple, being the largest company in the world, gets far greater benefit from this than any other company. To say giving a $100 million donation to the Covid-19 fight makes this a fair exchange is insulting. It is just tiny part of Apple’s marketing and PR budget.

\n\n

Apple and other corporations should be made to pay more taxes than they are now - because corporations will not build what our country desperately needs. Corporations will not provide health care for all, fix our roads and infrastructure, invest in science and technology, provide education to our children and insure our country will continue to provide an environment where the next Apple can thrive.

\n\n

I agree with Cook. Apple’s responsibility is to pay what they owe. It is our responsibility, as citizens, to realize that they owe more than what they are paying.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

John Dikerson interviews CEO Tim Cook for Sunday Morning and asks Cook how he balances his fiduciary responsibility to paying as low taxes as possible and still be a good social citizen. Cook’s answer:

\n\n

Well, our responsibility is to pay what we owe, just plain and simple.

\n\n

Cook then goes on to talk about all the good that Apple does - citing their work on Covid-19. But that is a very small minded, and frankly, dishonest way to look at the situation. Did Apple donate important and meaningful aid and technology in the fight against Covid-19? Yes. Does that give them a right to pay lower taxes? No.

\n\n

Apple takes way more then it gives back - its not even close. Consider these facts:

\n\n\n\n\n

And what has allowed Apple to be so successful? The United States government. They provided the infrastructure, social and political stability, and the economic engine to make Apple a possibility in the first place. And Apple, being the largest company in the world, gets far greater benefit from this than any other company. To say giving a $100 million donation to the Covid-19 fight makes this a fair exchange is insulting. It is just tiny part of Apple’s marketing and PR budget.

\n\n

Apple and other corporations should be made to pay more taxes than they are now - because corporations will not build what our country desperately needs. Corporations will not provide health care for all, fix our roads and infrastructure, invest in science and technology, provide education to our children and insure our country will continue to provide an environment where the next Apple can thrive.

\n\n

I agree with Cook. Apple’s responsibility is to pay what they owe. It is our responsibility, as citizens, to realize that they owe more than what they are paying.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/06/20/why-i-marched/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/06/20/why-i-marched/", "title": "Why we March", "date_published": "2020-06-20T22:49:42-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-06-20T22:49:42-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

First they came for the Communists
And I did not speak out
Because I was not a Communist

Then they came for the Socialists
And I did not speak out
Because I was not a Socialist

Then they came for the trade unionists
And I did not speak out
Because I was not a trade unionist

Then they came for the Jews
And I did not speak out
Because I was not a Jew

Then they came for me
And there was no one left
To speak out for me

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

First they came for the Communists
And I did not speak out
Because I was not a Communist

Then they came for the Socialists
And I did not speak out
Because I was not a Socialist

Then they came for the trade unionists
And I did not speak out
Because I was not a trade unionist

Then they came for the Jews
And I did not speak out
Because I was not a Jew

Then they came for me
And there was no one left
To speak out for me

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/06/18/america-inspiration-for-adolf-hitler/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/06/18/america-inspiration-for-adolf-hitler/", "title": "America - The inspiration for Adolf Hitler?", "date_published": "2020-06-18T23:34:32-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-06-18T23:34:32-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

I know that title might come of as click bait (okay maybe it is), but Alex Ross makes an interesting observation in The New Yorker.

\n\n

The Nazis were not wrong to cite American precedents. Enslavement of African-Americans was written into the U.S. Constitution. Thomas Jefferson spoke of the need to “eliminate” or “extirpate” Native Americans. In 1856, an Oregonian settler wrote, “Extermination, however unchristianlike it may appear, seems to be the only resort left for the protection of life and property.” General Philip Sheridan spoke of “annihilation, obliteration, and complete destruction.” To be sure, others promoted more peaceful-albeit still repressive-policies. The historian Edward B. Westermann, in “Hitler’s Ostkrieg and the Indian Wars” (Oklahoma), concludes that, because federal policy never officially mandated the “physical annihilation of the Native populations on racial grounds or characteristics,” this was not a genocide on the order of the Shoah. The fact remains that between 1500 and 1900 the Native population of U.S. territories dropped from many millions to around two hundred thousand.

America’s knack for maintaining an air of robust innocence in the wake of mass death struck Hitler as an example to be emulated. He made frequent mention of the American West in the early months of the Soviet invasion. The Volga would be “our Mississippi,” he said. “Europe — and not America — will be the land of unlimited possibilities.” Poland, Belarus, and Ukraine would be populated by pioneer farmer-soldier families. Autobahns would cut through fields of grain. The present occupants of those lands — tens of millions of them — would be starved to death. At the same time, and with no sense of contradiction, the Nazis partook of a long-standing German romanticization of Native Americans. One of Goebbels’s less propitious schemes was to confer honorary Aryan status on Native American tribes, in the hope that they would rise up against their oppressors.

Jim Crow laws in the American South served as a precedent in a stricter legal sense. Scholars have long been aware that Hitler’s regime expressed admiration for American race law, but they have tended to see this as a public-relations strategy — an “everybody does it” justification for Nazi policies. Whitman, however, points out that if these comparisons had been intended solely for a foreign audience they would not have been buried in hefty tomes in Fraktur type. “Race Law in the United States,” a 1936 study by the German lawyer Heinrich Krieger, attempts to sort out inconsistencies in the legal status of nonwhite Americans. Krieger concludes that the entire apparatus is hopelessly opaque, concealing racist aims behind contorted justifications. Why not simply say what one means? This was a major difference between American and German racism.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

I know that title might come of as click bait (okay maybe it is), but Alex Ross makes an interesting observation in The New Yorker.

\n\n

The Nazis were not wrong to cite American precedents. Enslavement of African-Americans was written into the U.S. Constitution. Thomas Jefferson spoke of the need to “eliminate” or “extirpate” Native Americans. In 1856, an Oregonian settler wrote, “Extermination, however unchristianlike it may appear, seems to be the only resort left for the protection of life and property.” General Philip Sheridan spoke of “annihilation, obliteration, and complete destruction.” To be sure, others promoted more peaceful-albeit still repressive-policies. The historian Edward B. Westermann, in “Hitler’s Ostkrieg and the Indian Wars” (Oklahoma), concludes that, because federal policy never officially mandated the “physical annihilation of the Native populations on racial grounds or characteristics,” this was not a genocide on the order of the Shoah. The fact remains that between 1500 and 1900 the Native population of U.S. territories dropped from many millions to around two hundred thousand.

America’s knack for maintaining an air of robust innocence in the wake of mass death struck Hitler as an example to be emulated. He made frequent mention of the American West in the early months of the Soviet invasion. The Volga would be “our Mississippi,” he said. “Europe — and not America — will be the land of unlimited possibilities.” Poland, Belarus, and Ukraine would be populated by pioneer farmer-soldier families. Autobahns would cut through fields of grain. The present occupants of those lands — tens of millions of them — would be starved to death. At the same time, and with no sense of contradiction, the Nazis partook of a long-standing German romanticization of Native Americans. One of Goebbels’s less propitious schemes was to confer honorary Aryan status on Native American tribes, in the hope that they would rise up against their oppressors.

Jim Crow laws in the American South served as a precedent in a stricter legal sense. Scholars have long been aware that Hitler’s regime expressed admiration for American race law, but they have tended to see this as a public-relations strategy — an “everybody does it” justification for Nazi policies. Whitman, however, points out that if these comparisons had been intended solely for a foreign audience they would not have been buried in hefty tomes in Fraktur type. “Race Law in the United States,” a 1936 study by the German lawyer Heinrich Krieger, attempts to sort out inconsistencies in the legal status of nonwhite Americans. Krieger concludes that the entire apparatus is hopelessly opaque, concealing racist aims behind contorted justifications. Why not simply say what one means? This was a major difference between American and German racism.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/06/17/which-country-has-the-worlds-best-health-care/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/06/17/which-country-has-the-worlds-best-health-care/", "title": "Which Country Has the World's Best Health Care?", "date_published": "2020-06-17T03:36:02-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-06-17T03:36:02-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Ezekiel J Emanuel, oncologist & bioethicist, compares the outcomes of several countries’ health care systems in his book “Which Country Has the World’s Best Health Care”. While American politicians and ill informed US citizens pretend that the US is #1, we rank last in a tie with China. An our response to the Covid-19 pandemic is proof of our dysfunctional health care system.

\n\n

The only thing the US is #1 in these days is military spending, gun violence, and number of Covid-19 patients of any country in the world.

\n\n

The US spends more than any other nation, nearly $4 trillion, on healthcare. Yet, for all that expense, the US is not ranked #1 — not even close.

In Which Country Has the World’s Best Healthcare? Ezekiel Emanuel profiles 11 of the world’s healthcare systems in pursuit of the best or at least where excellence can be found. Using a unique comparative structure, the book allows healthcare professionals, patients, and policymakers alike to know which systems perform well, and why, and which face endemic problems. From Taiwan to Germany, Australia to Switzerland, the most inventive healthcare providers tackle a global set of challenges — in pursuit of the best healthcare in the world.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Ezekiel J Emanuel, oncologist & bioethicist, compares the outcomes of several countries’ health care systems in his book “Which Country Has the World’s Best Health Care”. While American politicians and ill informed US citizens pretend that the US is #1, we rank last in a tie with China. An our response to the Covid-19 pandemic is proof of our dysfunctional health care system.

\n\n

The only thing the US is #1 in these days is military spending, gun violence, and number of Covid-19 patients of any country in the world.

\n\n

The US spends more than any other nation, nearly $4 trillion, on healthcare. Yet, for all that expense, the US is not ranked #1 — not even close.

In Which Country Has the World’s Best Healthcare? Ezekiel Emanuel profiles 11 of the world’s healthcare systems in pursuit of the best or at least where excellence can be found. Using a unique comparative structure, the book allows healthcare professionals, patients, and policymakers alike to know which systems perform well, and why, and which face endemic problems. From Taiwan to Germany, Australia to Switzerland, the most inventive healthcare providers tackle a global set of challenges — in pursuit of the best healthcare in the world.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/06/16/100-new-yorkers/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/06/16/100-new-yorkers/", "title": "100 New Yorkers", "date_published": "2020-06-16T01:52:10-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-06-16T01:52:10-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Mona Chalabi created a drawing of 100 people who are representative of NYC’s population for a NY Times opinion piece on inequality and coronavirus. You can purchase prints here

\n\n

\n", "content_html": "

Mona Chalabi created a drawing of 100 people who are representative of NYC’s population for a NY Times opinion piece on inequality and coronavirus. You can purchase prints here

\n\n

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/06/14/just-wear-a-face-mask/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/06/14/just-wear-a-face-mask/", "title": "Just Wear a F'n Face Mask!", "date_published": "2020-06-14T00:53:30-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-06-14T00:53:30-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Jason Kottke asking:

\n\n

Why WHY WHY!!!! are we still talking about this? There’s no credible evidence that wearing a mask is harmful, so at worse it’s harmless. If there’s like a 1-in-10 chance that masks are somewhat helpful — and the growing amount of research suggests that both 1-in-10 and “somewhat helpful” are both understatements — isn’t it worth the tiny bit of effort to wear one and help keep our neighbors safe from potential fucking death? Just in case?

\n\n\n

Japan is a great example. Japan is a country of megacities where most of the population uses public transport - but they have a total confirmed cases of Covid-19 of 17,382 with 924 deaths. The US has 2.12 million cases with 117 thousand deaths. You have to ask yourself what is Japan doing?

\n\n

“Japan, I think a lot of people agree, kind of did everything wrong, with poor social distancing, karaoke bars still open and public transit packed near the zone where the worst outbreaks were happening,” Jeremy Howard, a researcher at the University of San Francisco who has studied the use of masks, said of the country’s early response. “But the one thing that Japan did right was masks.”

\n\n\n

Lets not make wearing a mask yet another flash point in the culture wars. Wearing a mask is our cheapest, simplest and as of now most effective weapon against Covid-19. As our PINO once said - What have you got to loose?

\n\n

So please, WEAR A F'N MASK!

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Jason Kottke asking:

\n\n

Why WHY WHY!!!! are we still talking about this? There’s no credible evidence that wearing a mask is harmful, so at worse it’s harmless. If there’s like a 1-in-10 chance that masks are somewhat helpful — and the growing amount of research suggests that both 1-in-10 and “somewhat helpful” are both understatements — isn’t it worth the tiny bit of effort to wear one and help keep our neighbors safe from potential fucking death? Just in case?

\n\n\n

Japan is a great example. Japan is a country of megacities where most of the population uses public transport - but they have a total confirmed cases of Covid-19 of 17,382 with 924 deaths. The US has 2.12 million cases with 117 thousand deaths. You have to ask yourself what is Japan doing?

\n\n

“Japan, I think a lot of people agree, kind of did everything wrong, with poor social distancing, karaoke bars still open and public transit packed near the zone where the worst outbreaks were happening,” Jeremy Howard, a researcher at the University of San Francisco who has studied the use of masks, said of the country’s early response. “But the one thing that Japan did right was masks.”

\n\n\n

Lets not make wearing a mask yet another flash point in the culture wars. Wearing a mask is our cheapest, simplest and as of now most effective weapon against Covid-19. As our PINO once said - What have you got to loose?

\n\n

So please, WEAR A F'N MASK!

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/06/07/the-american-nightmare/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/06/07/the-american-nightmare/", "title": "The American Nightmare", "date_published": "2020-06-07T15:36:22-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-06-07T15:36:22-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Ibram X. Kendi in The Atlantic:

\n\n

To be black and conscious of anti-black racism is to stare into the mirror of your own extinction. Ask the souls of the 10,000 black victims of COVID-19 who might still be living if they had been white. Ask the souls of those who were told the pandemic was the “great equalizer.” Ask the souls of those forced to choose between their low-wage jobs and their treasured life. Ask the souls of those blamed for their own death. Ask the souls of those who disproportionately lost their jobs and then their life as others disproportionately raged about losing their freedom to infect us all. Ask the souls of those ignored by the governors reopening their states.

The American nightmare has everything and nothing to do with the pandemic. Ask the souls of Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and George Floyd. Step into their souls.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Ibram X. Kendi in The Atlantic:

\n\n

To be black and conscious of anti-black racism is to stare into the mirror of your own extinction. Ask the souls of the 10,000 black victims of COVID-19 who might still be living if they had been white. Ask the souls of those who were told the pandemic was the “great equalizer.” Ask the souls of those forced to choose between their low-wage jobs and their treasured life. Ask the souls of those blamed for their own death. Ask the souls of those who disproportionately lost their jobs and then their life as others disproportionately raged about losing their freedom to infect us all. Ask the souls of those ignored by the governors reopening their states.

The American nightmare has everything and nothing to do with the pandemic. Ask the souls of Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery, and George Floyd. Step into their souls.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/06/05/a-demonstration-of-fascism/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/06/05/a-demonstration-of-fascism/", "title": "A performance of fascism", "date_published": "2020-06-05T21:23:13-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-06-05T21:23:13-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

When you use your own military to attack the citizenry’s constitutional right to assemble and protest, it is not a show of strength. It is a show of fascism.

\n\n

Masha Gessen:

\n\n

What I am seeing is the performance of Fascism. Donald Trump has told us before, but never quite as clear or frightening, he is showing us what he thinks power looks and sounds like. Troops on the steps of the memorial or guarding the White House.

\n\n

We are seeing military force and display to refuse to be accountable in any way. The fact that the troops are refusing to identify themselves. The fact that they are unmarked terrifies me. He thinks power sounds like Blackhawk helicopters used to clear protesters. He thinks it looks like tear gas used to clear protestors. He uses words like ‘Dominate’ over and over in his phone call with governors. It is a performance of power and fascism. Everything we know about fascism. It is power that is concentrated in the hands of one nation, one race, and its brutality suppresses dissent. we see that now. He has chosen his road, whether he realizes it or not.

\n\n

[..]

\n\n

I don’t make predictions, but I can tell you what we are observing. A power grab always begins as a performance. A claim is made and then an autocrat sees if it is accepted - if the performance is believed. That is what we are asking right right now.

\n\n
\n\n\n



\n", "content_html": "

When you use your own military to attack the citizenry’s constitutional right to assemble and protest, it is not a show of strength. It is a show of fascism.

\n\n

Masha Gessen:

\n\n

What I am seeing is the performance of Fascism. Donald Trump has told us before, but never quite as clear or frightening, he is showing us what he thinks power looks and sounds like. Troops on the steps of the memorial or guarding the White House.

\n\n

We are seeing military force and display to refuse to be accountable in any way. The fact that the troops are refusing to identify themselves. The fact that they are unmarked terrifies me. He thinks power sounds like Blackhawk helicopters used to clear protesters. He thinks it looks like tear gas used to clear protestors. He uses words like ‘Dominate’ over and over in his phone call with governors. It is a performance of power and fascism. Everything we know about fascism. It is power that is concentrated in the hands of one nation, one race, and its brutality suppresses dissent. we see that now. He has chosen his road, whether he realizes it or not.

\n\n

[..]

\n\n

I don’t make predictions, but I can tell you what we are observing. A power grab always begins as a performance. A claim is made and then an autocrat sees if it is accepted - if the performance is believed. That is what we are asking right right now.

\n\n
\n\n\n



\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/06/05/what-leadership-looks-like/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/06/05/what-leadership-looks-like/", "title": "What leadership looks like", "date_published": "2020-06-05T01:35:22-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-06-05T01:35:22-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

No police, national guards, helicopters, FBI, tear gas, rubber bullets, riot gear or military equipment. Just the US citizenry in a peaceful march down the street led by the POTUS.

\n\n

I miss the good old days of 2015.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

No police, national guards, helicopters, FBI, tear gas, rubber bullets, riot gear or military equipment. Just the US citizenry in a peaceful march down the street led by the POTUS.

\n\n

I miss the good old days of 2015.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/06/05/trump-builds-the-wall/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/06/05/trump-builds-the-wall/", "title": "Trump Builds the Wall", "date_published": "2020-06-05T01:18:29-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-06-05T01:18:29-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Donald ‘Bunker Boy’ Trump finally built the wall he has been dreaming about for years. Instead of building it along the southern border, he built it in Washington DC. Complete with concrete barriers and fencing. Paid for by your tax dollars - not Mexico

\n\n
\n\n\n



\n\n

All he can do is run and hide like a little bitch

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Donald ‘Bunker Boy’ Trump finally built the wall he has been dreaming about for years. Instead of building it along the southern border, he built it in Washington DC. Complete with concrete barriers and fencing. Paid for by your tax dollars - not Mexico

\n\n
\n\n\n



\n\n

All he can do is run and hide like a little bitch

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/06/05/tump-on-tiananmen-square/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/06/05/tump-on-tiananmen-square/", "title": "Tump on Tiananmen Square", "date_published": "2020-06-05T01:08:08-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-06-05T01:08:08-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Donald ‘Bunker Boy’ Trump in a 1990 interview:

\n\n

When the now-Republican presidential frontrunner was asked his impression of the Soviet Union, the then-43-year-old replied:

“I was very unimpressed… Russia is out of control and the leadership knows it. That’s my problem with Gorbachev. Not a firm enough hand.”

He was asked whether he meant a “firm hand as in China?”, to which Trump replied:

“When the students poured into Tiananmen Square, the Chinese government almost blew it. Then they were vicious, they were horrible, but they put it down with strength. That shows you the power of strength. Our country is right now perceived as weak… as being spit on by the rest of the world.”

\n\n\n

Trump has been a dictator wanna be since the 1990s. And he wasn’t smart enough to hide it. He definitely isn’t hiding it today. People weren’t paying attention in 2016, hopefully they are paying attention now.

\n", "content_html": "

Donald ‘Bunker Boy’ Trump in a 1990 interview:

\n\n

When the now-Republican presidential frontrunner was asked his impression of the Soviet Union, the then-43-year-old replied:

“I was very unimpressed… Russia is out of control and the leadership knows it. That’s my problem with Gorbachev. Not a firm enough hand.”

He was asked whether he meant a “firm hand as in China?”, to which Trump replied:

“When the students poured into Tiananmen Square, the Chinese government almost blew it. Then they were vicious, they were horrible, but they put it down with strength. That shows you the power of strength. Our country is right now perceived as weak… as being spit on by the rest of the world.”

\n\n\n

Trump has been a dictator wanna be since the 1990s. And he wasn’t smart enough to hide it. He definitely isn’t hiding it today. People weren’t paying attention in 2016, hopefully they are paying attention now.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/06/04/james-mattis-denounces-trump/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/06/04/james-mattis-denounces-trump/", "title": "James Mattis Denounces Trump", "date_published": "2020-06-04T03:34:42-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-06-04T03:34:42-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

From The Atlantic:

\n\n

Donald Trump is the first president in my lifetime who does not try to unite the American people — does not even pretend to try. Instead he tries to divide us. We are witnessing the consequences of three years of this deliberate effort. We are witnessing the consequences of three years without mature leadership. We can unite without him, drawing on the strengths inherent in our civil society. This will not be easy, as the past few days have shown, but we owe it to our fellow citizens; to past generations that bled to defend our promise; and to our children. […]

We know that we are better than the abuse of executive authority that we witnessed in Lafayette Square. We must reject and hold accountable those in office who would make a mockery of our Constitution. At the same time, we must remember Lincoln’s “better angels,” and listen to them, as we work to unite.

\n\n\n

General Mattis, by saying we can unite without the Commander In Chief, General Mattis is essentially giving the US military and its citizens a vote of no confidence of the US President.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

From The Atlantic:

\n\n

Donald Trump is the first president in my lifetime who does not try to unite the American people — does not even pretend to try. Instead he tries to divide us. We are witnessing the consequences of three years of this deliberate effort. We are witnessing the consequences of three years without mature leadership. We can unite without him, drawing on the strengths inherent in our civil society. This will not be easy, as the past few days have shown, but we owe it to our fellow citizens; to past generations that bled to defend our promise; and to our children. […]

We know that we are better than the abuse of executive authority that we witnessed in Lafayette Square. We must reject and hold accountable those in office who would make a mockery of our Constitution. At the same time, we must remember Lincoln’s “better angels,” and listen to them, as we work to unite.

\n\n\n

General Mattis, by saying we can unite without the Commander In Chief, General Mattis is essentially giving the US military and its citizens a vote of no confidence of the US President.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/06/04/war-zone/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/06/04/war-zone/", "title": "War Zone", "date_published": "2020-06-04T02:26:07-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-06-04T02:26:07-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Trump shows his true colors - a wannabe dictator. The latest political ad from the Lincoln Project:

\n\n
\n\n\n



\n", "content_html": "

Trump shows his true colors - a wannabe dictator. The latest political ad from the Lincoln Project:

\n\n
\n\n\n



\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/06/04/police-warrior-training/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/06/04/police-warrior-training/", "title": "Police Warrior Training", "date_published": "2020-06-04T01:54:55-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-06-04T01:54:55-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

The Minneapolis Police Department’s motto is “To Protect with Courage, To Serve with Compassion!”. However their training is the antithesis of that honorable goal. Melissa Segura for BuzzFeed:

\n\n

More than a year before a Minneapolis police officer, Derek Chauvin, pinned George Floyd to the ground in a knee chokehold, Mayor Jacob Frey banned “warrior” training for the city’s police force.

Private trainers across the country host seminars, frequently at taxpayer expense, teaching “killology” and pushing the notion that if officers aren’t willing to “snuff out a life” then they should “consider another line of work.” Frey explained that this type of training — which has accompanied the increasing militarization of the police over the last few decades — undermined the community-based policing he wanted the city to adopt after a string of high-profile killings in the region.

But then the police union stepped in.

The Police Officers Federation of Minneapolis worked out a deal with a company to offer warrior training. For free. For as long as Frey was mayor.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

The Minneapolis Police Department’s motto is “To Protect with Courage, To Serve with Compassion!”. However their training is the antithesis of that honorable goal. Melissa Segura for BuzzFeed:

\n\n

More than a year before a Minneapolis police officer, Derek Chauvin, pinned George Floyd to the ground in a knee chokehold, Mayor Jacob Frey banned “warrior” training for the city’s police force.

Private trainers across the country host seminars, frequently at taxpayer expense, teaching “killology” and pushing the notion that if officers aren’t willing to “snuff out a life” then they should “consider another line of work.” Frey explained that this type of training — which has accompanied the increasing militarization of the police over the last few decades — undermined the community-based policing he wanted the city to adopt after a string of high-profile killings in the region.

But then the police union stepped in.

The Police Officers Federation of Minneapolis worked out a deal with a company to offer warrior training. For free. For as long as Frey was mayor.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/06/01/people-pushed-to-the-edge/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/06/01/people-pushed-to-the-edge/", "title": "People Pushed to the Edge", "date_published": "2020-06-01T02:47:07-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-06-01T02:47:07-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar in an oped for the LA Times

\n\n

Yes, protests often are used as an excuse for some to take advantage, just as when fans celebrating a hometown sports team championship burn cars and destroy storefronts. I don’t want to see stores looted or even buildings burn. But African Americans have been living in a burning building for many years, choking on the smoke as the flames burn closer and closer. Racism in America is like dust in the air. It seems invisible — even if you’re choking on it — until you let the sun in. Then you see it’s everywhere. As long as we keep shining that light, we have a chance of cleaning it wherever it lands. But we have to stay vigilant, because it’s always still in the air.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar in an oped for the LA Times

\n\n

Yes, protests often are used as an excuse for some to take advantage, just as when fans celebrating a hometown sports team championship burn cars and destroy storefronts. I don’t want to see stores looted or even buildings burn. But African Americans have been living in a burning building for many years, choking on the smoke as the flames burn closer and closer. Racism in America is like dust in the air. It seems invisible — even if you’re choking on it — until you let the sun in. Then you see it’s everywhere. As long as we keep shining that light, we have a chance of cleaning it wherever it lands. But we have to stay vigilant, because it’s always still in the air.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/05/29/knight-rider-for-8-cellos/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/05/29/knight-rider-for-8-cellos/", "title": "Knight Rider for 8 cellos", "date_published": "2020-05-29T04:17:56-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-05-29T04:17:56-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Samara Ginsberg performs the Knight Rider intro theme with 8 cellos. The theme is one of the greatest of any TV show ever and is brilliantly performed here.

\n\n

Sounds like a shadowy flight into the dangerous world of a man who does not exist.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\n
\nI wonder how many Firebirds Pontiac sold on the back of this show. And also check out her performance of the Imperial March (Darth Vader’s Theme).

\n", "content_html": "

Samara Ginsberg performs the Knight Rider intro theme with 8 cellos. The theme is one of the greatest of any TV show ever and is brilliantly performed here.

\n\n

Sounds like a shadowy flight into the dangerous world of a man who does not exist.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\n
\nI wonder how many Firebirds Pontiac sold on the back of this show. And also check out her performance of the Imperial March (Darth Vader’s Theme).

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/05/29/you-are-not-seeing-socialism/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/05/29/you-are-not-seeing-socialism/", "title": "You are not seeing Socialism", "date_published": "2020-05-29T03:55:00-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-05-29T03:55:00-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

The Covid-19 pandemic has revealed that American democracy and our economic system is extremely fragile. Ok, unless you’re wealthy, in which case you will do fine - you will most likely come out with even more wealth. Of course, that is part of the plan.

\n\n

Paul Field’s Facebook post says it best

\n\n

You are not seeing Socialism. What you are seeing is one of the wealthiest, geographically advantaged, productive capitalist societies in the world flounder and fail at its most basic test. Taking care of its people.

\n\n

\n\n

What you are seeing is a quarter century of technological brilliance being reduced to a narcissistic popularity contest. You’re seeing the folly of basing the health and welfare of an entire society on personal greed. You’re seeing all the necessary tools, for us to shrug off this crisis, go unused while people argue over who should get the credit and profit. Even worse, you’re seeing vital help withheld because recipients might not, “deserve it…”

\n\n

You’re seeing a lot of things nobody thought they’d ever see, but you’re not seeing Socialism…

\n", "content_html": "

The Covid-19 pandemic has revealed that American democracy and our economic system is extremely fragile. Ok, unless you’re wealthy, in which case you will do fine - you will most likely come out with even more wealth. Of course, that is part of the plan.

\n\n

Paul Field’s Facebook post says it best

\n\n

You are not seeing Socialism. What you are seeing is one of the wealthiest, geographically advantaged, productive capitalist societies in the world flounder and fail at its most basic test. Taking care of its people.

\n\n

\n\n

What you are seeing is a quarter century of technological brilliance being reduced to a narcissistic popularity contest. You’re seeing the folly of basing the health and welfare of an entire society on personal greed. You’re seeing all the necessary tools, for us to shrug off this crisis, go unused while people argue over who should get the credit and profit. Even worse, you’re seeing vital help withheld because recipients might not, “deserve it…”

\n\n

You’re seeing a lot of things nobody thought they’d ever see, but you’re not seeing Socialism…

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/05/25/u-dot-s-deaths-near-100-000/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/05/25/u-dot-s-deaths-near-100-000/", "title": "U.S. Deaths near 100,000", "date_published": "2020-05-25T09:16:44-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-05-25T09:16:44-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

In the past five months - since March, more Americans have died from Covid-19 than in the decade-plus of the Vietnam War and the death toll is a third of the number of Americans who died in World War II.

\n\n

\n\n

Putting 100,000 dots or stick figures on a page “doesn’t really tell you very much about who these people were, the lives that they lived, what it means for us as a country,” Ms. Landon said. So, she came up with the idea of compiling obituaries and death notices of Covid-19 victims from newspapers large and small across the country, and culling vivid passages from them.

Alain Delaquérière, a researcher, combed through various sources online for obituaries and death notices with Covid-19 written as the cause of death. He compiled a list of nearly a thousand names from hundreds of newspapers. A team of editors from across the newsroom, in addition to three graduate student journalists, read them and gleaned phrases that depicted the uniqueness of each life lost:

“Alan Lund, 81, Washington, conductor with ‘the most amazing ear’ … ”

“Theresa Elloie, 63, New Orleans, renowned for her business making detailed pins and corsages … ”

“Florencio Almazo Morán, 65, New York City, one-man army … ”

“Coby Adolph, 44, Chicago, entrepreneur and adventurer … ”

\n\n\n

The magnitude of loss is incomprehensible. The fallout of this will echo for decades, and touch each of us. When we get past this, the one thing we cannot do is forget all of these people. Each of these people was someone special, who in their own way, was contributing to make this nation great. And we owe to them to make this mean something. We owe it to them to rethink our supply systems, our health care system, and how we view each other.

\n", "content_html": "

In the past five months - since March, more Americans have died from Covid-19 than in the decade-plus of the Vietnam War and the death toll is a third of the number of Americans who died in World War II.

\n\n

\n\n

Putting 100,000 dots or stick figures on a page “doesn’t really tell you very much about who these people were, the lives that they lived, what it means for us as a country,” Ms. Landon said. So, she came up with the idea of compiling obituaries and death notices of Covid-19 victims from newspapers large and small across the country, and culling vivid passages from them.

Alain Delaquérière, a researcher, combed through various sources online for obituaries and death notices with Covid-19 written as the cause of death. He compiled a list of nearly a thousand names from hundreds of newspapers. A team of editors from across the newsroom, in addition to three graduate student journalists, read them and gleaned phrases that depicted the uniqueness of each life lost:

“Alan Lund, 81, Washington, conductor with ‘the most amazing ear’ … ”

“Theresa Elloie, 63, New Orleans, renowned for her business making detailed pins and corsages … ”

“Florencio Almazo Morán, 65, New York City, one-man army … ”

“Coby Adolph, 44, Chicago, entrepreneur and adventurer … ”

\n\n\n

The magnitude of loss is incomprehensible. The fallout of this will echo for decades, and touch each of us. When we get past this, the one thing we cannot do is forget all of these people. Each of these people was someone special, who in their own way, was contributing to make this nation great. And we owe to them to make this mean something. We owe it to them to rethink our supply systems, our health care system, and how we view each other.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/05/22/billie-joe-armstrong-manic-monday/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/05/22/billie-joe-armstrong-manic-monday/", "title": "Billie Joe Armstrong - Manic Monday", "date_published": "2020-05-22T17:16:19-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-05-22T17:16:19-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

“Manic Monday” performed by Billie Joe of Green Day with the help of Susanna Hoffs from The Bangles. By the way, this is yet another song written by Prince. Billie Joe is an absolute beast - he should make an album of him doing covers of the 80s. I can’t believe Susanna Hoffs is 61 – still rock'n as ever!

\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

“Manic Monday” performed by Billie Joe of Green Day with the help of Susanna Hoffs from The Bangles. By the way, this is yet another song written by Prince. Billie Joe is an absolute beast - he should make an album of him doing covers of the 80s. I can’t believe Susanna Hoffs is 61 – still rock'n as ever!

\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/05/21/nature-by-the-numbers/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/05/21/nature-by-the-numbers/", "title": "Math Magic", "date_published": "2020-05-21T12:54:23-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-05-21T12:54:23-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Mathemagician Arthur Benjamin explores hidden properties of that weird and wonderful set of numbers, the Fibonacci series. Could you imagine if high school math classes were taught with the same excitement?

\n\n
\n\n\n



\n", "content_html": "

Mathemagician Arthur Benjamin explores hidden properties of that weird and wonderful set of numbers, the Fibonacci series. Could you imagine if high school math classes were taught with the same excitement?

\n\n
\n\n\n



\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/05/20/dr-suess-in-the-pandemic/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/05/20/dr-suess-in-the-pandemic/", "title": "Dr. Seuss in the Pandemic", "date_published": "2020-05-20T02:35:55-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-05-20T02:35:55-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Designer Jim Malloy has reimagined the books of Dr. Seuss for the coronavirus age and changing the author to “Dr. Fauci”. You can check out the results on Instagram and in this Instagram Story.

\n\n

\n

\n\n

\n\n

\n", "content_html": "

Designer Jim Malloy has reimagined the books of Dr. Seuss for the coronavirus age and changing the author to “Dr. Fauci”. You can check out the results on Instagram and in this Instagram Story.

\n\n

\n

\n\n

\n\n

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/05/19/harvards-reinhart-and-rogoff-say-this-time-really-is-different/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/05/19/harvards-reinhart-and-rogoff-say-this-time-really-is-different/", "title": "Harvard's Reinhart And Rogoff Predict a U Shape Recovery", "date_published": "2020-05-19T02:08:38-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-05-19T02:08:38-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

What will the economy look like when we finally turn the corner? And how ling will it take. That is the primary question on people mind. Despite what the Trump administration says, looks like we are in for a U shape recovery. And it will take five long years. At best.

\n\n

\n\n

Bloomberg Markets spoke to Reinhart, a former deputy director at the IMF who’s now a professor at the Harvard Kennedy School, and Rogoff, a former IMF chief economist who’s now a professor at Harvard. It turns out this time really is different.

\n\n

So what does the economic recovery look like?

\n\n

Carmen Reinhart:

\n\n

And you want to talk about a negative productivity shock, too. The biggest positive productivity shock we’ve had over the last 40 years has been globalization together with technology. And I think if you take away the globalization, you probably take away some of the technology. So that affects not just trade, but movements and people. And then there are the socio-political ramifications. I liken the incident we’re in to The Wizard of Oz, where Dorothy got sucked up in the tornado with her house, and it’s spinning around, and you don’t know where it will come down. That’s where our social, political, economic system is at the moment. There’s a lot of uncertainty, and it’s probably not in the pro-growth direction.\nThere is talk on whether it’s going to be a W-shape if there’s a second wave and so on. That’s a very real possibility given past pandemics and if there’s no vaccine. One thing that’s clear is the numbers are going to look spectacularly great in some months simply because you’re coming out from a base that was pretty devastated. That doesn’t imply that per capita incomes are going to go back in V-shape to what they were before.

\n\n

The shock has disrupted supply chains globally and trade big-time. The World Trade Organization tells you trade can decline anywhere between 13% and 32%. I don’t think you just break and re-create supply chains at the drop of a hat. There are a lot of geographic changes that are being necessitated because, if the economic downturn has been synchronous, the disease itself hasn’t been synchronous.

\n\n

Another reason I think the V-shape story is dubious is that we’re all living in economies that have a hugely important service component. How do we know which retailers are going to come back? Which restaurants are going to come back? Cinemas? When this crisis began to morph from a medical problem into a financial crisis, then it was clear we were going to have more hysteresis, longer-lived effects.

\n\n

Kenneth Rogoff:

\n\n

In our book, Carmen and I use the definition of recovery as going back to the same income as the beginning. That, by the way, is really not the Wall Street definition of recovery, where recovery is going back to where the trend was. So we use a much more modest version of recovery. And still, with postwar financial crises before 2008-09, the average was four years, and for the Great Depression, 10 years. And there are many ways this feels more like the Great Depression.

\n\n

Also you probably need a debt moratorium that’s fairly widespread for emerging markets and developing economies. As an analogy, the IMF or Chapter 11 bankruptcy is very good at dealing with a couple of countries or a couple of firms at a time. But just as the hospitals can’t handle all the Covid-19 patients showing up in the same week, neither can our bankruptcy system and neither can the international financial institutions.

\n\n

So there are going to be phenomenal frictions coming out of this wave of bankruptcies, defaults. It’s probably going to be, at best, a U-shaped recovery. And I don’t know how long it’s going to take us to get back to the 2019 per capita GDP. I would say, looking at it now, five years would seem like a good outcome out of this.

\n", "content_html": "

What will the economy look like when we finally turn the corner? And how ling will it take. That is the primary question on people mind. Despite what the Trump administration says, looks like we are in for a U shape recovery. And it will take five long years. At best.

\n\n

\n\n

Bloomberg Markets spoke to Reinhart, a former deputy director at the IMF who’s now a professor at the Harvard Kennedy School, and Rogoff, a former IMF chief economist who’s now a professor at Harvard. It turns out this time really is different.

\n\n

So what does the economic recovery look like?

\n\n

Carmen Reinhart:

\n\n

And you want to talk about a negative productivity shock, too. The biggest positive productivity shock we’ve had over the last 40 years has been globalization together with technology. And I think if you take away the globalization, you probably take away some of the technology. So that affects not just trade, but movements and people. And then there are the socio-political ramifications. I liken the incident we’re in to The Wizard of Oz, where Dorothy got sucked up in the tornado with her house, and it’s spinning around, and you don’t know where it will come down. That’s where our social, political, economic system is at the moment. There’s a lot of uncertainty, and it’s probably not in the pro-growth direction.\nThere is talk on whether it’s going to be a W-shape if there’s a second wave and so on. That’s a very real possibility given past pandemics and if there’s no vaccine. One thing that’s clear is the numbers are going to look spectacularly great in some months simply because you’re coming out from a base that was pretty devastated. That doesn’t imply that per capita incomes are going to go back in V-shape to what they were before.

\n\n

The shock has disrupted supply chains globally and trade big-time. The World Trade Organization tells you trade can decline anywhere between 13% and 32%. I don’t think you just break and re-create supply chains at the drop of a hat. There are a lot of geographic changes that are being necessitated because, if the economic downturn has been synchronous, the disease itself hasn’t been synchronous.

\n\n

Another reason I think the V-shape story is dubious is that we’re all living in economies that have a hugely important service component. How do we know which retailers are going to come back? Which restaurants are going to come back? Cinemas? When this crisis began to morph from a medical problem into a financial crisis, then it was clear we were going to have more hysteresis, longer-lived effects.

\n\n

Kenneth Rogoff:

\n\n

In our book, Carmen and I use the definition of recovery as going back to the same income as the beginning. That, by the way, is really not the Wall Street definition of recovery, where recovery is going back to where the trend was. So we use a much more modest version of recovery. And still, with postwar financial crises before 2008-09, the average was four years, and for the Great Depression, 10 years. And there are many ways this feels more like the Great Depression.

\n\n

Also you probably need a debt moratorium that’s fairly widespread for emerging markets and developing economies. As an analogy, the IMF or Chapter 11 bankruptcy is very good at dealing with a couple of countries or a couple of firms at a time. But just as the hospitals can’t handle all the Covid-19 patients showing up in the same week, neither can our bankruptcy system and neither can the international financial institutions.

\n\n

So there are going to be phenomenal frictions coming out of this wave of bankruptcies, defaults. It’s probably going to be, at best, a U-shaped recovery. And I don’t know how long it’s going to take us to get back to the 2019 per capita GDP. I would say, looking at it now, five years would seem like a good outcome out of this.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/05/19/you-went-to-harvard-right/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/05/19/you-went-to-harvard-right/", "title": "You went to Harvard right?", "date_published": "2020-05-19T01:21:21-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-05-19T01:21:21-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\nBill Burr sums up the US college system perfectly:

\n\n

The funny thing about that scandal is that they got their dumb kids in there but then they were able to handle the curriculum with no problem. None of them flunked out. So evidently, the real difficulty is getting in. Once you are in, you are fine.

\n\n

Conan:

\n\n

Yea. Yea.

\n\n

Bill:

\n\n

You went to Harvard right?

\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\nBill Burr sums up the US college system perfectly:

\n\n

The funny thing about that scandal is that they got their dumb kids in there but then they were able to handle the curriculum with no problem. None of them flunked out. So evidently, the real difficulty is getting in. Once you are in, you are fine.

\n\n

Conan:

\n\n

Yea. Yea.

\n\n

Bill:

\n\n

You went to Harvard right?

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/05/17/obamas-hbcu-commencement-speech/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/05/17/obamas-hbcu-commencement-speech/", "title": "Obama’s HBCU commencement speech", "date_published": "2020-05-17T02:29:53-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-05-17T02:29:53-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

In his first national address since the Covid-19 pandic, former President Barack Obama delivered a commencement speech to graduates at historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) Saturday.

\n\n

\n
\n
\nOn our current leadership in America:

\n\n

More than anything, this pandemic has fully finally torn back the curtain on the idea that so many of the folks in charge know what they’re doing, A lot of them aren’t even pretending to be in charge.

\n\n

On the Covid-19 pandemic:

\n\n

Let’s be honest, a disease like this just spotlights the underlying inequalities and extra burdens that black communities have historically had to deal with in this country. We see it in the disproportionate impact of Covid-19 on our communities, just as we see it when a black man goes for a jog and some folks feel like they can stop and question and shoot him if he doesn’t submit to their questioning.

\n\n

And finally on challenge ahead for us:

\n\n

And on the big unfinished goals in this country, like economic and environmental justice and health care for everybody, broad majorities agree on the ends. That’s why folks with power will keep trying to divide you over the means. Because that’s how nothing changes. You get a system that looks out for the rich and powerful and nobody else. So expand your moral imaginations, build bridges, and grow your allies in the process of bringing about a better world.

\n", "content_html": "

In his first national address since the Covid-19 pandic, former President Barack Obama delivered a commencement speech to graduates at historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) Saturday.

\n\n

\n
\n
\nOn our current leadership in America:

\n\n

More than anything, this pandemic has fully finally torn back the curtain on the idea that so many of the folks in charge know what they’re doing, A lot of them aren’t even pretending to be in charge.

\n\n

On the Covid-19 pandemic:

\n\n

Let’s be honest, a disease like this just spotlights the underlying inequalities and extra burdens that black communities have historically had to deal with in this country. We see it in the disproportionate impact of Covid-19 on our communities, just as we see it when a black man goes for a jog and some folks feel like they can stop and question and shoot him if he doesn’t submit to their questioning.

\n\n

And finally on challenge ahead for us:

\n\n

And on the big unfinished goals in this country, like economic and environmental justice and health care for everybody, broad majorities agree on the ends. That’s why folks with power will keep trying to divide you over the means. Because that’s how nothing changes. You get a system that looks out for the rich and powerful and nobody else. So expand your moral imaginations, build bridges, and grow your allies in the process of bringing about a better world.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/05/17/a-contemporaneous-history-of-the-absurd/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/05/17/a-contemporaneous-history-of-the-absurd/", "title": "A contemporaneous history of the absurd", "date_published": "2020-05-17T02:17:06-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-05-17T02:17:06-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Edward Luce in a well researched article for The Financial Times:

\n\n

What has gone wrong? I interviewed dozens of people, including outsiders who Trump consults regularly, former senior advisers, World Health Organization officials, leading scientists and diplomats, and figures inside the White House. Some spoke off the record.

Again and again, the story that emerged is of a president who ignored increasingly urgent intelligence warnings from January, dismisses anyone who claims to know more than him and trusts no one outside a tiny coterie, led by his daughter Ivanka and her husband, Jared Kushner – the property developer who Trump has empowered to sideline the best-funded disaster response bureaucracy in the world.

People often observed during Trump’s first three years that he had yet to be tested in a true crisis. Covid-19 is way bigger than that. “Trump’s handling of the pandemic at home and abroad has exposed more painfully than anything since he took office the meaning of America First,” says William Burns, who was the most senior US diplomat, and is now head of the Carnegie Endowment.

“America is first in the world in deaths, first in the world in infections and we stand out as an emblem of global incompetence. The damage to America’s influence and reputation will be very hard to undo.”

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Edward Luce in a well researched article for The Financial Times:

\n\n

What has gone wrong? I interviewed dozens of people, including outsiders who Trump consults regularly, former senior advisers, World Health Organization officials, leading scientists and diplomats, and figures inside the White House. Some spoke off the record.

Again and again, the story that emerged is of a president who ignored increasingly urgent intelligence warnings from January, dismisses anyone who claims to know more than him and trusts no one outside a tiny coterie, led by his daughter Ivanka and her husband, Jared Kushner – the property developer who Trump has empowered to sideline the best-funded disaster response bureaucracy in the world.

People often observed during Trump’s first three years that he had yet to be tested in a true crisis. Covid-19 is way bigger than that. “Trump’s handling of the pandemic at home and abroad has exposed more painfully than anything since he took office the meaning of America First,” says William Burns, who was the most senior US diplomat, and is now head of the Carnegie Endowment.

“America is first in the world in deaths, first in the world in infections and we stand out as an emblem of global incompetence. The damage to America’s influence and reputation will be very hard to undo.”

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/05/17/density-does-not-spread-covid-19/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/05/17/density-does-not-spread-covid-19/", "title": "Density does not spread Covid-19", "date_published": "2020-05-17T01:26:48-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-05-17T01:26:48-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

The spread of Covid-19 is not a cause by density, but by poverty and the massive wealth disparity in the United States. Combined with a weak to non-existent safety net for millions of displaced workers, the conditions are ripe for contagion spread. Dr. Mary T. Bassett, in an excellent article in the New York Times:

\n\n

Imagine a low-wage worker, who holds two jobs to support her family and pay the rent, who has to work during this pandemic because her job is “essential,” who works when sick because she has no sick leave. She travels on a crowded bus, puts off medical care because she lacks insurance, and then returns to an apartment crammed with young children and elderly family members. Maybe she fills in on the night shift as an aide at a nursing home.

This all conspires to make her especially vulnerable to the coronavirus — with the result that her household, her nursing home and her neighbors all are liable to become sick as well. In this scenario, “the city” is not to blame for the explosion in cases of Covid-19.

That disease is devastating cities like New York because of the structure of health care, the housing market and the labor market, not because of their density. The spread of the coronavirus didn’t require cities — we have also seen small towns ravaged. Rather, cities were merely the front door, the first stop.

It’s not that there are too many people in cities. It’s that too many of their residents are poor, and many of them are members of the especially vulnerable black, Latino and Asian populations.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

The spread of Covid-19 is not a cause by density, but by poverty and the massive wealth disparity in the United States. Combined with a weak to non-existent safety net for millions of displaced workers, the conditions are ripe for contagion spread. Dr. Mary T. Bassett, in an excellent article in the New York Times:

\n\n

Imagine a low-wage worker, who holds two jobs to support her family and pay the rent, who has to work during this pandemic because her job is “essential,” who works when sick because she has no sick leave. She travels on a crowded bus, puts off medical care because she lacks insurance, and then returns to an apartment crammed with young children and elderly family members. Maybe she fills in on the night shift as an aide at a nursing home.

This all conspires to make her especially vulnerable to the coronavirus — with the result that her household, her nursing home and her neighbors all are liable to become sick as well. In this scenario, “the city” is not to blame for the explosion in cases of Covid-19.

That disease is devastating cities like New York because of the structure of health care, the housing market and the labor market, not because of their density. The spread of the coronavirus didn’t require cities — we have also seen small towns ravaged. Rather, cities were merely the front door, the first stop.

It’s not that there are too many people in cities. It’s that too many of their residents are poor, and many of them are members of the especially vulnerable black, Latino and Asian populations.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/05/14/prince-and-the-revolution-live-show-fairs-tonight/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/05/14/prince-and-the-revolution-live-show-fairs-tonight/", "title": "Prince and the Revolution Live Show Airs tonight", "date_published": "2020-05-14T14:29:37-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-05-14T14:29:37-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

As part of a benefit for Covid-19 relief, The Prince Estate will be broadcasting a classic concert by Prince & the Revolution from 1985’s Purple Rain tour on YouTube. The stream (embedded below) will begin on Thursday, May 14 at 8pm ET and will only be available through Sunday, May 17.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\n", "content_html": "

As part of a benefit for Covid-19 relief, The Prince Estate will be broadcasting a classic concert by Prince & the Revolution from 1985’s Purple Rain tour on YouTube. The stream (embedded below) will begin on Thursday, May 14 at 8pm ET and will only be available through Sunday, May 17.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/05/10/trump-utterly-incapable-of-leadership/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/05/10/trump-utterly-incapable-of-leadership/", "title": "Utterly Incapable Of Leadership", "date_published": "2020-05-10T16:35:01-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-05-10T16:35:01-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Coronavirus-related job losses top 20.5 million, as the unemployment rate reaches almost 15 percent, the highest rate since The Great Depression. Joy Reid and her panel discuss a new ad from The Lincoln Project called ‘Mourning in America, that details horrible outcomes of the mismanagement of the pandemic.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\nSteve Schmidt, a former Republican strategist no less, perfectly summarizes the Trump presidency.

\n\n

We see a man just so small, so outmatched, so in over his head. And so it is that at the beginning of the third decade of the 21st century, in a time of peace and prosperity generally, the United states elected very narrowly to the Presidency a reality television star, a failed business man, really a carnival barker. We had a real lack of imagination in this country for the capacity for the possibility of tragedy. And real tragedy has come. And we look at that ad, it was just a few days that it aired and yea it talks about 60,000 dead Americans and soon we’ll be at 100 thousand and soon we will be at 200 thousand. This is a man who promised to run saying, ‘I can fix it alone.’. ‘I will make America great again.’ And his legacy will be mass death, will be suffering at an epic level and economic collapse. Thats’s the trump legacy and he has demonstrated through this he has exactly zero capacity to lead this nation out of this mess. It will not be the work of one presidential term. It will be the work of many presidential terms for there to be a season of American recovery, and we see every day his incapacity to lead. In short less than 6 months the American people are going to have to decide in the most import election this country has had since 1864 whether the United States will go into a steep descent of decline or we can possibly begin to recover from the Trumpian disaster that the country faces.

\n", "content_html": "

Coronavirus-related job losses top 20.5 million, as the unemployment rate reaches almost 15 percent, the highest rate since The Great Depression. Joy Reid and her panel discuss a new ad from The Lincoln Project called ‘Mourning in America, that details horrible outcomes of the mismanagement of the pandemic.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\nSteve Schmidt, a former Republican strategist no less, perfectly summarizes the Trump presidency.

\n\n

We see a man just so small, so outmatched, so in over his head. And so it is that at the beginning of the third decade of the 21st century, in a time of peace and prosperity generally, the United states elected very narrowly to the Presidency a reality television star, a failed business man, really a carnival barker. We had a real lack of imagination in this country for the capacity for the possibility of tragedy. And real tragedy has come. And we look at that ad, it was just a few days that it aired and yea it talks about 60,000 dead Americans and soon we’ll be at 100 thousand and soon we will be at 200 thousand. This is a man who promised to run saying, ‘I can fix it alone.’. ‘I will make America great again.’ And his legacy will be mass death, will be suffering at an epic level and economic collapse. Thats’s the trump legacy and he has demonstrated through this he has exactly zero capacity to lead this nation out of this mess. It will not be the work of one presidential term. It will be the work of many presidential terms for there to be a season of American recovery, and we see every day his incapacity to lead. In short less than 6 months the American people are going to have to decide in the most import election this country has had since 1864 whether the United States will go into a steep descent of decline or we can possibly begin to recover from the Trumpian disaster that the country faces.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/05/10/are-we-becoming-stupid/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/05/10/are-we-becoming-stupid/", "title": "Are we becoming stupid?", "date_published": "2020-05-10T00:40:42-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-05-10T00:40:42-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Just listening to our national discourse proves there is something to what Nicholas Carr is hinting at in “Is Google Making Us Stupid? What the Internet is doing to our brains”

\n\n

So, yes, you should be skeptical of my skepticism. Perhaps those who dismiss critics of the Internet as Luddites or nostalgists will be proved correct, and from our hyperactive, data-stoked minds will spring a golden age of intellectual discovery and universal wisdom. Then again, the Net isn’t the alphabet, and although it may replace the printing press, it produces something altogether different. The kind of deep reading that a sequence of printed pages promotes is valuable not just for the knowledge we acquire from the author’s words but for the intellectual vibrations those words set off within our own minds. In the quiet spaces opened up by the sustained, undistracted reading of a book, or by any other act of contemplation, for that matter, we make our own associations, draw our own inferences and analogies, foster our own ideas. Deep reading, as Maryanne Wolf argues, is indistinguishable from deep thinking.

If we lose those quiet spaces, or fill them up with “content,” we will sacrifice something important not only in our selves but in our culture.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Just listening to our national discourse proves there is something to what Nicholas Carr is hinting at in “Is Google Making Us Stupid? What the Internet is doing to our brains”

\n\n

So, yes, you should be skeptical of my skepticism. Perhaps those who dismiss critics of the Internet as Luddites or nostalgists will be proved correct, and from our hyperactive, data-stoked minds will spring a golden age of intellectual discovery and universal wisdom. Then again, the Net isn’t the alphabet, and although it may replace the printing press, it produces something altogether different. The kind of deep reading that a sequence of printed pages promotes is valuable not just for the knowledge we acquire from the author’s words but for the intellectual vibrations those words set off within our own minds. In the quiet spaces opened up by the sustained, undistracted reading of a book, or by any other act of contemplation, for that matter, we make our own associations, draw our own inferences and analogies, foster our own ideas. Deep reading, as Maryanne Wolf argues, is indistinguishable from deep thinking.

If we lose those quiet spaces, or fill them up with “content,” we will sacrifice something important not only in our selves but in our culture.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/05/07/we-are-not-essential-we-are-sacrificial/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/05/07/we-are-not-essential-we-are-sacrificial/", "title": "We are not Essential. We are Sacrificial.", "date_published": "2020-05-07T10:37:40-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-05-07T10:37:40-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Sujatha Gidla, a NYC M.T.A. conductor in an opinion piece for the New York Times:

\n\n

The conditions created by the pandemic drive home the fact that we essential workers — workers in general — are the ones who keep the social order from sinking into chaos. Yet we are treated with the utmost disrespect, as though we’re expendable. Since March 27, at least 98 New York transit workers have died of Covid-19. My co-workers say bitterly: “We are not essential. We are sacrificial.”

That may be true individually, but not in our numbers. Hopefully this experience will make us see clearly the crucial role we play in keeping society running so that we can stand up for our interests, for our lives. Like the Pittsburgh sanitation workers walking out to demand protective equipment. Like the G.E. workers calling on the company to repurpose plants to make ventilators instead of jet engines.

I took my second test on April 30. It was negative. Tomorrow, I will go back to work.

\n\n\n

These are the true heroes in this pandemic. Not the politicians, not the movie stars, not the journalists. It is the garbage collectors, public transportation workers, the grocery workers. And of course the first responders and medical workers.

\n\n

And these are the people that we treat the worst in society. These are the people we consistently pay the least. We provide no healthcare, no medical leave. Worst of all, most people think of them as lower class citizens. The lazy. The uneducated. The people who just need to “bootstrap themselves” to success. These are the soldiers on the wall.

\n\n

They are holding us together by a thinest of margins. We must correct these inequities.

\n", "content_html": "

Sujatha Gidla, a NYC M.T.A. conductor in an opinion piece for the New York Times:

\n\n

The conditions created by the pandemic drive home the fact that we essential workers — workers in general — are the ones who keep the social order from sinking into chaos. Yet we are treated with the utmost disrespect, as though we’re expendable. Since March 27, at least 98 New York transit workers have died of Covid-19. My co-workers say bitterly: “We are not essential. We are sacrificial.”

That may be true individually, but not in our numbers. Hopefully this experience will make us see clearly the crucial role we play in keeping society running so that we can stand up for our interests, for our lives. Like the Pittsburgh sanitation workers walking out to demand protective equipment. Like the G.E. workers calling on the company to repurpose plants to make ventilators instead of jet engines.

I took my second test on April 30. It was negative. Tomorrow, I will go back to work.

\n\n\n

These are the true heroes in this pandemic. Not the politicians, not the movie stars, not the journalists. It is the garbage collectors, public transportation workers, the grocery workers. And of course the first responders and medical workers.

\n\n

And these are the people that we treat the worst in society. These are the people we consistently pay the least. We provide no healthcare, no medical leave. Worst of all, most people think of them as lower class citizens. The lazy. The uneducated. The people who just need to “bootstrap themselves” to success. These are the soldiers on the wall.

\n\n

They are holding us together by a thinest of margins. We must correct these inequities.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/05/06/tiny-desk-concert-suzanne-vega/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/05/06/tiny-desk-concert-suzanne-vega/", "title": "Tiny Desk Concert - Suzanne Vega", "date_published": "2020-05-06T03:36:29-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-05-06T03:36:29-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Most people know Suzanne Vega from just two songs in the 80s - “Luka” and “Toms Diner”. But she has been making great music for the past 40 years. I have been a huge fan for years. Here is Susanne performing with brilliant guitarist Gerry Leonard.

\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Most people know Suzanne Vega from just two songs in the 80s - “Luka” and “Toms Diner”. But she has been making great music for the past 40 years. I have been a huge fan for years. Here is Susanne performing with brilliant guitarist Gerry Leonard.

\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/05/06/mourning-in-america/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/05/06/mourning-in-america/", "title": "Mourning in America", "date_published": "2020-05-06T02:29:31-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-05-06T02:29:31-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Under the leadership of Donal Trump our country is weaker and sicker and poorer.

\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Under the leadership of Donal Trump our country is weaker and sicker and poorer.

\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/05/06/normalizing-between-one-and-three-thousand-deaths/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/05/06/normalizing-between-one-and-three-thousand-deaths/", "title": "Normalizing three thousand deaths", "date_published": "2020-05-06T02:09:59-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-05-06T02:09:59-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Jay Rosen perfectly describes Trump’s plan for dealing with Covid-19.

\n\n

The plan is to have no plan, to let daily deaths between one and three thousand become a normal thing, and then to create massive confusion about who is responsible — by telling the governors they’re in charge without doing what only the federal government can do, by fighting with the press when it shows up to be briefed, by fixing blame for the virus on China or some other foreign element, and by “flooding the zone with shit,” Steve Bannon’s phrase for overwhelming the system with disinformation, distraction, and denial, which boosts what economists call “search costs” for reliable intelligence.

Stated another way, the plan is to default on public problem solving, and then prevent the public from understanding the consequences of that default. To succeed this will require one of the biggest propaganda and freedom of information fights in U.S. history, the execution of which will, I think, consume the president’s re-election campaign.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Jay Rosen perfectly describes Trump’s plan for dealing with Covid-19.

\n\n

The plan is to have no plan, to let daily deaths between one and three thousand become a normal thing, and then to create massive confusion about who is responsible — by telling the governors they’re in charge without doing what only the federal government can do, by fighting with the press when it shows up to be briefed, by fixing blame for the virus on China or some other foreign element, and by “flooding the zone with shit,” Steve Bannon’s phrase for overwhelming the system with disinformation, distraction, and denial, which boosts what economists call “search costs” for reliable intelligence.

Stated another way, the plan is to default on public problem solving, and then prevent the public from understanding the consequences of that default. To succeed this will require one of the biggest propaganda and freedom of information fights in U.S. history, the execution of which will, I think, consume the president’s re-election campaign.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/05/05/herd-immunity-will-cost-millions-of-lives/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/05/05/herd-immunity-will-cost-millions-of-lives/", "title": "Herd Immunity will cost millions of lives", "date_published": "2020-05-05T03:29:04-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-05-05T03:29:04-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Herd immunity doesn’t stop a virus in its tracks. The number of infections continues to climb after herd immunity is reached. The problem with “natural” herd immunity & Covid-19 is that millions will die.

\n\n

In an opinion piece in the New York Times:

\n\n

In the absence of a vaccine, developing immunity to a disease like Covid-19 requires actually being infected with the coronavirus. For this to work, prior infection has to confer immunity against future infection. While hopeful, scientists are not yet certain that this is the case, nor do they know how long this immunity might last. The virus was discovered only a few months ago.

But even assuming that immunity is long-lasting, a very large number of people must be infected to reach the herd immunity threshold required. Given that current estimates suggest roughly 0.5 percent to 1 percent of all infections are fatal, that means a lot of deaths.

Perhaps most important to understand, the virus doesn’t magically disappear when the herd immunity threshold is reached. That’s not when things stop — it’s only when they start to slow down.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Herd immunity doesn’t stop a virus in its tracks. The number of infections continues to climb after herd immunity is reached. The problem with “natural” herd immunity & Covid-19 is that millions will die.

\n\n

In an opinion piece in the New York Times:

\n\n

In the absence of a vaccine, developing immunity to a disease like Covid-19 requires actually being infected with the coronavirus. For this to work, prior infection has to confer immunity against future infection. While hopeful, scientists are not yet certain that this is the case, nor do they know how long this immunity might last. The virus was discovered only a few months ago.

But even assuming that immunity is long-lasting, a very large number of people must be infected to reach the herd immunity threshold required. Given that current estimates suggest roughly 0.5 percent to 1 percent of all infections are fatal, that means a lot of deaths.

Perhaps most important to understand, the virus doesn’t magically disappear when the herd immunity threshold is reached. That’s not when things stop — it’s only when they start to slow down.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/05/05/fsecond-amendment-does-not-protect-ter*rorism/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/05/05/fsecond-amendment-does-not-protect-ter*rorism/", "title": "Second Amendment does not protect terrorism", "date_published": "2020-05-05T02:45:11-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-05-05T02:45:11-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n

Directly above me, men with rifles yelling at us. Some of my colleagues who own bullet proof vests are wearing them. I have never appreciated our Sergeants-at-Arms more than today. #mileg pic.twitter.com/voOZpPYWOs

— Senator Dayna Polehanki (@SenPolehanki) April 30, 2020
\n
\n\n\n

In any other country taunting or threatening a public official with the use of deadly force would be met with swift and probably deadly force. What exactly do these people hope to accomplish? This is a direct effort to intimidate our elected officials into voting their way. It isn’t gong to work. These left wing nuts hiding behind the second amendment should be arrested and tried as domestic terrorists.

\n", "content_html": "
\n

Directly above me, men with rifles yelling at us. Some of my colleagues who own bullet proof vests are wearing them. I have never appreciated our Sergeants-at-Arms more than today. #mileg pic.twitter.com/voOZpPYWOs

— Senator Dayna Polehanki (@SenPolehanki) April 30, 2020
\n
\n\n\n

In any other country taunting or threatening a public official with the use of deadly force would be met with swift and probably deadly force. What exactly do these people hope to accomplish? This is a direct effort to intimidate our elected officials into voting their way. It isn’t gong to work. These left wing nuts hiding behind the second amendment should be arrested and tried as domestic terrorists.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/05/04/may-the-4th-be-with-you/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/05/04/may-the-4th-be-with-you/", "title": "May the 4th be with you", "date_published": "2020-05-04T13:21:05-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-05-04T13:21:05-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

We finally we have a holiday that isn’t crippled by coronavirus lockdowns and social distancing.\nChoose whether you want to deepen your engagement by making it relevant, or just use it as an escape pod off the Star Destroyer. Or both. You must do what you think is right, of course.

\n\n

May the Force be with you. Always.

\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

We finally we have a holiday that isn’t crippled by coronavirus lockdowns and social distancing.\nChoose whether you want to deepen your engagement by making it relevant, or just use it as an escape pod off the Star Destroyer. Or both. You must do what you think is right, of course.

\n\n

May the Force be with you. Always.

\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/05/04/dolphins-coach-don-shula-dies-at-90/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/05/04/dolphins-coach-don-shula-dies-at-90/", "title": "Dolphins coach Don Shula dies at 90", "date_published": "2020-05-04T12:54:34-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-05-04T12:54:34-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Coach Shula presided over the only team to have a perfect 17-0 season. A record that no other team has matched since. Here is a great look at his amazing career.

\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Coach Shula presided over the only team to have a perfect 17-0 season. A record that no other team has matched since. Here is a great look at his amazing career.

\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/05/04/we-need-to-ask-a-better-question/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/05/04/we-need-to-ask-a-better-question/", "title": "We need to ask better questions", "date_published": "2020-05-04T11:01:58-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-05-04T11:01:58-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

During the on going quarantine it is common for conversations and zoom meetings to begin with the obligatory ‘How are you doing?’ Ashley Fetters challenges us to ask a better question.

\n\n

If we want to take the extra step to show our loved ones that we’re really asking, though, and not just greeting them as we might have done in normal times, reaching for a question that more explicitly asks after their emotional or psychological well-being might help. “How are you coping?,” for instance, signals that you don’t expect whomever you’re talking with to be doing great, and that you are genuinely curious about how they’re handling things. “What’s been on your mind lately?” suggests openness to a deeper conversation. You might also follow up on a worry or concern they’ve mentioned before, and check in on how they’re feeling about it now.

However you choose to start your conversations during quarantine, perhaps the most important thing is to ask a genuine question that invites a genuine answer. One of the kindest gestures we can extend to others in a time like this is to make clear that they don’t have to pretend they’re fine.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

During the on going quarantine it is common for conversations and zoom meetings to begin with the obligatory ‘How are you doing?’ Ashley Fetters challenges us to ask a better question.

\n\n

If we want to take the extra step to show our loved ones that we’re really asking, though, and not just greeting them as we might have done in normal times, reaching for a question that more explicitly asks after their emotional or psychological well-being might help. “How are you coping?,” for instance, signals that you don’t expect whomever you’re talking with to be doing great, and that you are genuinely curious about how they’re handling things. “What’s been on your mind lately?” suggests openness to a deeper conversation. You might also follow up on a worry or concern they’ve mentioned before, and check in on how they’re feeling about it now.

However you choose to start your conversations during quarantine, perhaps the most important thing is to ask a genuine question that invites a genuine answer. One of the kindest gestures we can extend to others in a time like this is to make clear that they don’t have to pretend they’re fine.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/05/04/when-should-you-wear-a-mask/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/05/04/when-should-you-wear-a-mask/", "title": "When should you wear a mask?", "date_published": "2020-05-04T00:23:13-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-05-04T00:23:13-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Katie Notopoulos over at Buzz Feed’s How to Plague advice column on when you should wear your mask:

\n\n

A good way to gauge the amount of distance where it’s OK to dangle your mask around your neck or off one ear is to imagine your mouth is your asshole. If you were completely alone, it would be fine to let your nude tushy hang out, but you’d want to pull on your pants as soon as you saw anyone coming, even from 100 feet away. Basically, if someone can see you, mask up.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Katie Notopoulos over at Buzz Feed’s How to Plague advice column on when you should wear your mask:

\n\n

A good way to gauge the amount of distance where it’s OK to dangle your mask around your neck or off one ear is to imagine your mouth is your asshole. If you were completely alone, it would be fine to let your nude tushy hang out, but you’d want to pull on your pants as soon as you saw anyone coming, even from 100 feet away. Basically, if someone can see you, mask up.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/27/how-dumb-is-president-trump/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/27/how-dumb-is-president-trump/", "title": "How dumb is President Trump?", "date_published": "2020-04-27T12:16:18-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-27T12:16:18-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Here are some things that Donal Trump has said - from nuking tornados to taking over airports in the revolutionary war. And let’s not even get started on injecting people with disinfectant. I don’t know if I should laugh or cry. What is really scary is that 40% of the country thinks this guy is a genius.

\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Here are some things that Donal Trump has said - from nuking tornados to taking over airports in the revolutionary war. And let’s not even get started on injecting people with disinfectant. I don’t know if I should laugh or cry. What is really scary is that 40% of the country thinks this guy is a genius.

\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/27/a-social-distance/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/27/a-social-distance/", "title": "Social Distance across the world", "date_published": "2020-04-27T00:05:39-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-27T00:05:39-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Filmmakers Ivan Cash and Jacob Jonas made a short crowd sourced video on how people all over the world are dealing with social distancing.

\n\n

Amid what can feel like a constant deluge of depressing news, A Social Distance is a glimmer of hope and a welcome reprieve. The short documentary—co-directed by Jacob Jonas and Ivan Cash, scored by Steve Hackman, and premiering on The Atlantic today—offers a window into the ordinary quarantine experiences of people from more than 30 countries. In the self-submitted videos, people dance, play music, take us on a tour of their refrigerator, and introduce us to their pets. Edited together, these intimate moments create a synchronicity of humanity—a feeling of togetherness that’s difficult to conjure when you’re sequestered at home.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\n", "content_html": "

Filmmakers Ivan Cash and Jacob Jonas made a short crowd sourced video on how people all over the world are dealing with social distancing.

\n\n

Amid what can feel like a constant deluge of depressing news, A Social Distance is a glimmer of hope and a welcome reprieve. The short documentary—co-directed by Jacob Jonas and Ivan Cash, scored by Steve Hackman, and premiering on The Atlantic today—offers a window into the ordinary quarantine experiences of people from more than 30 countries. In the self-submitted videos, people dance, play music, take us on a tour of their refrigerator, and introduce us to their pets. Edited together, these intimate moments create a synchronicity of humanity—a feeling of togetherness that’s difficult to conjure when you’re sequestered at home.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/26/rolling-stones-perform-at-home/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/26/rolling-stones-perform-at-home/", "title": "Rolling Stones perform at home", "date_published": "2020-04-26T01:44:50-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-26T01:44:50-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Members of the Rolling Stones, each in their own home, got together via video to perform You Can’t Always Get What You Want. It’s the perfect song in times like these. Many of us aren’t getting what we want, but with a little patience and some luck we just might get what we need.

\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Members of the Rolling Stones, each in their own home, got together via video to perform You Can’t Always Get What You Want. It’s the perfect song in times like these. Many of us aren’t getting what we want, but with a little patience and some luck we just might get what we need.

\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/23/whos-on-first/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/23/whos-on-first/", "title": "Mayor Goodman - Who's On First?", "date_published": "2020-04-23T01:01:12-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-23T01:01:12-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman says that she wants to reopen the city’s casinos, restaurants and entertainment venues for business so people can get back to work. Problem is she has no plan or authority to control those casinos, restaurants and entertainment venues regarding testing or social distancing.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\nWhen Anderson Cooper pushes her on her responsibility:

\n\n

Anderson Cooper: That’s your position?
\nCarolyn Goodman: No, that’s not my position but it is my position.

\n\n

This women is bat sh*t crazy - she’s like the mayor in Jaws. Reminds me of “Who’s on first base?” skit by Abbott AND Costello.

\n\n

Here is the truth that these right wing fools need to understand - if you pit capitalism against the science, science wins every time.

\n", "content_html": "

Las Vegas Mayor Carolyn Goodman says that she wants to reopen the city’s casinos, restaurants and entertainment venues for business so people can get back to work. Problem is she has no plan or authority to control those casinos, restaurants and entertainment venues regarding testing or social distancing.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\nWhen Anderson Cooper pushes her on her responsibility:

\n\n

Anderson Cooper: That’s your position?
\nCarolyn Goodman: No, that’s not my position but it is my position.

\n\n

This women is bat sh*t crazy - she’s like the mayor in Jaws. Reminds me of “Who’s on first base?” skit by Abbott AND Costello.

\n\n

Here is the truth that these right wing fools need to understand - if you pit capitalism against the science, science wins every time.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/21/a-message-to-protestors/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/21/a-message-to-protestors/", "title": "A message to Protestors", "date_published": "2020-04-21T00:52:02-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-21T00:52:02-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Doctor Dara Kass has a message for protestors:

\n\n
\n\n\n

\n", "content_html": "

Doctor Dara Kass has a message for protestors:

\n\n
\n\n\n

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/20/a-roadmap-to-pandemic-resilience/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/20/a-roadmap-to-pandemic-resilience/", "title": "A Roadmap to Pandemic Resilience", "date_published": "2020-04-20T23:01:49-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-20T23:01:49-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\n\n

A bipartisan group of experts in public health, economics, technology, and ethics have produced a plan for a phased reopening of public life in the United States through testing, tracing, and supported isolation.

\n\n

Among the report’s top recommendations is the need to deliver at least 5 million tests per day by early June to help ensure a safe social opening. This number will need to increase to 20 million tests per day by mid-summer to fully re-mobilize the economy.

\n\n

\n\n

Summary of the findings:

\n\n

What we need to do is much bigger than most people realize. We need to massively scale-up testing, contact tracing, isolation, and quarantine-together with providing the resources to make these possible for all individuals.

Broad and rapid access to testing is vital for disease monitoring, rapid public health response, and disease control.

We need to deliver 5 million tests per day by early June to deliver a safe social reopening. This number will need to increase over time (ideally by late July) to 20 million a day to fully remobilize the economy. We acknowledge that even this number may not be high enough to protect public health. In that considerably less likely eventuality, we will need to scale-up testing much further. By the time we know if we need to do that, we should be in a better position to know how to do it. In any situation, achieving these numbers depends on testing innovation.

Between now and August, we should phase in economic mobilization in sync with growth in our capacity to provide sustainable testing programs for mobilized sectors of the workforce.

The great value of this approach is that it will prevent cycles of opening up and shutting down. It allows us to steadily reopen the parts of the economy that have been shut down, protect our frontline workers, and contain the virus to levels where it can be effectively managed and treated until we can find a vaccine.

We can have bottom-up innovation and participation and top-down direction and protection at the same time; that is what our federal system is designed for.

This policy roadmap lays out how massive testing plus contact tracing plus social isolation with strong social supports, or TTSI, can rebuild trust in our personal safety and the safety of those we love. This will in turn support a renewal of mobility and mobilization of the economy. This paper is designed to educate the American public about what is emerging as a consensus national strategy.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\n\n

A bipartisan group of experts in public health, economics, technology, and ethics have produced a plan for a phased reopening of public life in the United States through testing, tracing, and supported isolation.

\n\n

Among the report’s top recommendations is the need to deliver at least 5 million tests per day by early June to help ensure a safe social opening. This number will need to increase to 20 million tests per day by mid-summer to fully re-mobilize the economy.

\n\n

\n\n

Summary of the findings:

\n\n

What we need to do is much bigger than most people realize. We need to massively scale-up testing, contact tracing, isolation, and quarantine-together with providing the resources to make these possible for all individuals.

Broad and rapid access to testing is vital for disease monitoring, rapid public health response, and disease control.

We need to deliver 5 million tests per day by early June to deliver a safe social reopening. This number will need to increase over time (ideally by late July) to 20 million a day to fully remobilize the economy. We acknowledge that even this number may not be high enough to protect public health. In that considerably less likely eventuality, we will need to scale-up testing much further. By the time we know if we need to do that, we should be in a better position to know how to do it. In any situation, achieving these numbers depends on testing innovation.

Between now and August, we should phase in economic mobilization in sync with growth in our capacity to provide sustainable testing programs for mobilized sectors of the workforce.

The great value of this approach is that it will prevent cycles of opening up and shutting down. It allows us to steadily reopen the parts of the economy that have been shut down, protect our frontline workers, and contain the virus to levels where it can be effectively managed and treated until we can find a vaccine.

We can have bottom-up innovation and participation and top-down direction and protection at the same time; that is what our federal system is designed for.

This policy roadmap lays out how massive testing plus contact tracing plus social isolation with strong social supports, or TTSI, can rebuild trust in our personal safety and the safety of those we love. This will in turn support a renewal of mobility and mobilization of the economy. This paper is designed to educate the American public about what is emerging as a consensus national strategy.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/18/weve-built-cities-we-cant-afford/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/18/weve-built-cities-we-cant-afford/", "title": "We've Built Cities We Can't Afford", "date_published": "2020-04-18T20:43:09-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-18T20:43:09-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\n

\n\n

In this sense, Kansas City, Missouri is no different than most communities in the United States and Canada. In the last 70 years, the physical size of Kansas City has quadrupled while the population has remained relatively stable. (Put another way, every resident of Kansas City is on the hook for maintaining four times as much of the city as his or her predecessors.) In Kansas City, there are 6,500 linear miles of lanes just in the city street system—so not including county, state and federal roadways. This is the equivalent of driving from New York to San Francisco and back, with a bonus trip to Portland, Maine. According to the Kansas City public works department, to maintain and replace existing roads it needs ten times more money each year than it can ask for.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\n

\n\n

In this sense, Kansas City, Missouri is no different than most communities in the United States and Canada. In the last 70 years, the physical size of Kansas City has quadrupled while the population has remained relatively stable. (Put another way, every resident of Kansas City is on the hook for maintaining four times as much of the city as his or her predecessors.) In Kansas City, there are 6,500 linear miles of lanes just in the city street system—so not including county, state and federal roadways. This is the equivalent of driving from New York to San Francisco and back, with a bonus trip to Portland, Maine. According to the Kansas City public works department, to maintain and replace existing roads it needs ten times more money each year than it can ask for.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/18/its-time-to-build/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/18/its-time-to-build/", "title": "It's Time to Build", "date_published": "2020-04-18T20:26:05-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-18T20:26:05-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

As the Coronavirus rages through US communities - one thing is devastatingly clear. We, the United States, no longer build anything of true value. All of the essential needs - masks, protective gear for healthcare workers, ventilator machines, medication, housing, transportation, infrastructure - are not built in the United States.

\n\n

Marc Andreessen writes in his post - It’s Time To Build:

\n\n

It’s time for full-throated, unapologetic, uncompromised political support from the right for aggressive investment in new products, in new industries, in new factories, in new science, in big leaps forward.

The left starts out with a stronger bias toward the public sector in many of these areas. To which I say, prove the superior model! Demonstrate that the public sector can build better hospitals, better schools, better transportation, better cities, better housing. Stop trying to protect the old, the entrenched, the irrelevant; commit the public sector fully to the future. Milton Friedman once said the great public sector mistake is to judge policies and programs by their intentions rather than their results. Instead of taking that as an insult, take it as a challenge — build new things and show the results!

Show that new models of public sector healthcare can be inexpensive and effective — how about starting with the VA? When the next coronavirus comes along, blow us away! Even private universities like Harvard are lavished with public funding; why can’t 100,000 or 1 million students a year attend Harvard? Why shouldn’t regulators and taxpayers demand that Harvard build? Solve the climate crisis by building — energy experts say that all carbon-based electrical power generation on the planet could be replaced by a few thousand new zero-emission nuclear reactors, so let’s build those. Maybe we can start with 10 new reactors? Then 100? Then the rest?

In fact, I think building is how we reboot the American dream. The things we build in huge quantities, like computers and TVs, drop rapidly in price. The things we don’t, like housing, schools, and hospitals, skyrocket in price. What’s the American dream? The opportunity to have a home of your own, and a family you can provide for. We need to break the rapidly escalating price curves for housing, education, and healthcare, to make sure that every American can realize the dream, and the only way to do that is to build.

Building isn’t easy, or we’d already be doing all this. We need to demand more of our political leaders, of our CEOs, our entrepreneurs, our investors. We need to demand more of our culture, of our society. And we need to demand more from one another. We’re all necessary, and we can all contribute, to building.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

As the Coronavirus rages through US communities - one thing is devastatingly clear. We, the United States, no longer build anything of true value. All of the essential needs - masks, protective gear for healthcare workers, ventilator machines, medication, housing, transportation, infrastructure - are not built in the United States.

\n\n

Marc Andreessen writes in his post - It’s Time To Build:

\n\n

It’s time for full-throated, unapologetic, uncompromised political support from the right for aggressive investment in new products, in new industries, in new factories, in new science, in big leaps forward.

The left starts out with a stronger bias toward the public sector in many of these areas. To which I say, prove the superior model! Demonstrate that the public sector can build better hospitals, better schools, better transportation, better cities, better housing. Stop trying to protect the old, the entrenched, the irrelevant; commit the public sector fully to the future. Milton Friedman once said the great public sector mistake is to judge policies and programs by their intentions rather than their results. Instead of taking that as an insult, take it as a challenge — build new things and show the results!

Show that new models of public sector healthcare can be inexpensive and effective — how about starting with the VA? When the next coronavirus comes along, blow us away! Even private universities like Harvard are lavished with public funding; why can’t 100,000 or 1 million students a year attend Harvard? Why shouldn’t regulators and taxpayers demand that Harvard build? Solve the climate crisis by building — energy experts say that all carbon-based electrical power generation on the planet could be replaced by a few thousand new zero-emission nuclear reactors, so let’s build those. Maybe we can start with 10 new reactors? Then 100? Then the rest?

In fact, I think building is how we reboot the American dream. The things we build in huge quantities, like computers and TVs, drop rapidly in price. The things we don’t, like housing, schools, and hospitals, skyrocket in price. What’s the American dream? The opportunity to have a home of your own, and a family you can provide for. We need to break the rapidly escalating price curves for housing, education, and healthcare, to make sure that every American can realize the dream, and the only way to do that is to build.

Building isn’t easy, or we’d already be doing all this. We need to demand more of our political leaders, of our CEOs, our entrepreneurs, our investors. We need to demand more of our culture, of our society. And we need to demand more from one another. We’re all necessary, and we can all contribute, to building.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/18/capitialism-vs-cronysim/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/18/capitialism-vs-cronysim/", "title": "Capitialism or Cronysim", "date_published": "2020-04-18T20:16:51-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-18T20:16:51-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

From John Grubber at Daring Fireball:

\n\n

Take the cruise line industry. They’re getting crushed by this pandemic for obvious reasons, and they very much want to be bailed out by the U.S. government. But why do they deserve it? For tax and regulatory reasons, they don’t even register their ships in the U.S. — Carnival Cruise Lines is incorporated in Panama, Norwegian in Bermuda, and Royal Caribbean in Liberia. Bermuda is not part of Norway and, last I checked, Liberia is not in the Caribbean. Not only do these companies want U.S. funded bailouts, they don’t even want to pay U.S. taxes or comply with U.S. laws during normal times.

The thing to remember is that if allowed to fail, the cruise ships won’t sink to the bottom of the ocean. The jobs won’t disappear. The companies will go into bankruptcy, existing shareholder equity will get wiped out, and new ownership will take over. A bailout won’t rescue the industry or the jobs — it will rescue the shareholders.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

From John Grubber at Daring Fireball:

\n\n

Take the cruise line industry. They’re getting crushed by this pandemic for obvious reasons, and they very much want to be bailed out by the U.S. government. But why do they deserve it? For tax and regulatory reasons, they don’t even register their ships in the U.S. — Carnival Cruise Lines is incorporated in Panama, Norwegian in Bermuda, and Royal Caribbean in Liberia. Bermuda is not part of Norway and, last I checked, Liberia is not in the Caribbean. Not only do these companies want U.S. funded bailouts, they don’t even want to pay U.S. taxes or comply with U.S. laws during normal times.

The thing to remember is that if allowed to fail, the cruise ships won’t sink to the bottom of the ocean. The jobs won’t disappear. The companies will go into bankruptcy, existing shareholder equity will get wiped out, and new ownership will take over. A bailout won’t rescue the industry or the jobs — it will rescue the shareholders.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/17/speaking-truth-to-power/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/17/speaking-truth-to-power/", "title": "Steve Schmidt - Speaking truth to power", "date_published": "2020-04-17T21:51:13-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-17T21:51:13-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\n
\nSteve Schmidt, former Republican strategist, tells MSNBC’s Ari Melber that many avoidable problems in the US response to the coronavirus pandemic revealed Trump’s failures as a president. Historians will look back on this as a time when a reality show star “New York con man” narrowly ended up as President and was simply not prepared.

\n\n

It is about time that the Republicans standup to Trump’s dangerous ineptitude.

\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\n
\nSteve Schmidt, former Republican strategist, tells MSNBC’s Ari Melber that many avoidable problems in the US response to the coronavirus pandemic revealed Trump’s failures as a president. Historians will look back on this as a time when a reality show star “New York con man” narrowly ended up as President and was simply not prepared.

\n\n

It is about time that the Republicans standup to Trump’s dangerous ineptitude.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/17/john-conway-dies/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/17/john-conway-dies/", "title": "John Conway Dies", "date_published": "2020-04-17T18:36:40-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-17T18:36:40-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n
\n
\nJohn Conway dies from Covid-19 at age 82. John Conway, an English mathematician, is best known as the inventor of the Game of Life.

\n", "content_html": "

\n
\n
\nJohn Conway dies from Covid-19 at age 82. John Conway, an English mathematician, is best known as the inventor of the Game of Life.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/17/ultimate-gaslighting/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/17/ultimate-gaslighting/", "title": "Ultimate Gaslighting", "date_published": "2020-04-17T00:43:39-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-17T00:43:39-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Julio Vincent Gambuto highlights what what the Covid-19 pandemic exposed about our country - that the United States leadership is indifferent to its own people.

\n\n

Until then, get ready, my friends. What is about to be unleashed on American society will be the greatest campaign ever created to get you to feel normal again. It will come from brands, it will come from government, it will even come from each other, and it will come from the left and from the right. We will do anything, spend anything, believe anything, just so we can take away how horribly uncomfortable all of this feels. And on top of that, just to turn the screw that much more, will be the one effort that’s even greater: the all-out blitz to make you believe you never saw what you saw. The air wasn’t really cleaner; those images were fake. The hospitals weren’t really a war zone; those stories were hyperbole. The numbers were not that high; the press is lying. You didn’t see people in masks standing in the rain risking their lives to vote. Not in America. You didn’t see the leader of the free world push an unproven miracle drug like a late-night infomercial salesman. That was a crisis update. You didn’t see homeless people dead on the street. You didn’t see inequality. You didn’t see indifference. You didn’t see utter failure of leadership and systems.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Julio Vincent Gambuto highlights what what the Covid-19 pandemic exposed about our country - that the United States leadership is indifferent to its own people.

\n\n

Until then, get ready, my friends. What is about to be unleashed on American society will be the greatest campaign ever created to get you to feel normal again. It will come from brands, it will come from government, it will even come from each other, and it will come from the left and from the right. We will do anything, spend anything, believe anything, just so we can take away how horribly uncomfortable all of this feels. And on top of that, just to turn the screw that much more, will be the one effort that’s even greater: the all-out blitz to make you believe you never saw what you saw. The air wasn’t really cleaner; those images were fake. The hospitals weren’t really a war zone; those stories were hyperbole. The numbers were not that high; the press is lying. You didn’t see people in masks standing in the rain risking their lives to vote. Not in America. You didn’t see the leader of the free world push an unproven miracle drug like a late-night infomercial salesman. That was a crisis update. You didn’t see homeless people dead on the street. You didn’t see inequality. You didn’t see indifference. You didn’t see utter failure of leadership and systems.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/17/corona-virus-in-nursing-homes/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/17/corona-virus-in-nursing-homes/", "title": "Corona Virus in Nursing Homes", "date_published": "2020-04-17T00:23:58-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-17T00:23:58-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Ireland, a country with 448 deaths as of today, has successfully contained the Covid-19 in their country. How did they do it?

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This effectively contained them to 448 deaths in all of Ireland. Upon further investigation they noticed that more than half of those deaths were in nursing homes.

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The health director of Ireland, having secured the general population, is now directing resources. He is asking all health care workers, firefighters, nursing aids, even caterers to work in nursing homes. Further more, he is guaranteeing that these volunteers will get paid and receive proper protective equipment.

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With the US nursing homes under siege, what is our government doing? NOTHING. They are left to fend for themselves.
\n

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\n\n\n

\n", "content_html": "

Ireland, a country with 448 deaths as of today, has successfully contained the Covid-19 in their country. How did they do it?

\n\n\n\n\n

This effectively contained them to 448 deaths in all of Ireland. Upon further investigation they noticed that more than half of those deaths were in nursing homes.

\n\n

The health director of Ireland, having secured the general population, is now directing resources. He is asking all health care workers, firefighters, nursing aids, even caterers to work in nursing homes. Further more, he is guaranteeing that these volunteers will get paid and receive proper protective equipment.

\n\n

With the US nursing homes under siege, what is our government doing? NOTHING. They are left to fend for themselves.
\n

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\n\n\n

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/16/coronavirus-vaccine/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/16/coronavirus-vaccine/", "title": "Coronavirus Vaccine", "date_published": "2020-04-16T03:44:33-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-16T03:44:33-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Derek Lowe on his blog at Science Translational Medicine provides some good news regarding a Covid-19 vaccine. Once a vaccine is developed and approved by the FDA, how quickly will we be able to manufacture and have a large scale application of the vaccine.

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Time for another look at the coronavirus vaccine front, since we have several recent news items. Word has come from GSK and Sanofi that they are going to collaborate on vaccine development, which brings together two of the more experienced large organizations in the field. It looks like Sanofi is bringing the spike protein and GSK is bringing the adjuvant (more on what that means below). Their press release says that they plan to go into human patients late this year and to have everything ready for regulatory filing in the second half of 2021. For its part, Pfizer has announced that they’re pushing up their schedule with BioNTech and possibly starting human trials in August, which probably puts them on a similar timeline for eventual filing.

“But that’s next year!” will be the reaction of many who are hoping for a vaccine ASAP, and I can understand why. The thing is, that would be absolutely unprecedented speed, way past the current record set by the Ebola vaccine, which took about five years. More typical development times are ten years or more. But hold that thought while you peruse another news item today from J&J. They have an even more aggressive timeline proposed for their own vaccine work: they have already announced that they have a candidate, and they say that they plan first-in-human trials in September. Data will be available from those in December, and in January 2021 they say that they will have the first batches of vaccine ready for an FDA Emergency Use Authorization. Now that is shooting for the world record on both the scientific and regulatory fronts.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Derek Lowe on his blog at Science Translational Medicine provides some good news regarding a Covid-19 vaccine. Once a vaccine is developed and approved by the FDA, how quickly will we be able to manufacture and have a large scale application of the vaccine.

\n\n

Time for another look at the coronavirus vaccine front, since we have several recent news items. Word has come from GSK and Sanofi that they are going to collaborate on vaccine development, which brings together two of the more experienced large organizations in the field. It looks like Sanofi is bringing the spike protein and GSK is bringing the adjuvant (more on what that means below). Their press release says that they plan to go into human patients late this year and to have everything ready for regulatory filing in the second half of 2021. For its part, Pfizer has announced that they’re pushing up their schedule with BioNTech and possibly starting human trials in August, which probably puts them on a similar timeline for eventual filing.

“But that’s next year!” will be the reaction of many who are hoping for a vaccine ASAP, and I can understand why. The thing is, that would be absolutely unprecedented speed, way past the current record set by the Ebola vaccine, which took about five years. More typical development times are ten years or more. But hold that thought while you peruse another news item today from J&J. They have an even more aggressive timeline proposed for their own vaccine work: they have already announced that they have a candidate, and they say that they plan first-in-human trials in September. Data will be available from those in December, and in January 2021 they say that they will have the first batches of vaccine ready for an FDA Emergency Use Authorization. Now that is shooting for the world record on both the scientific and regulatory fronts.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/14/dare-to-be-stupid/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/14/dare-to-be-stupid/", "title": "Dare To Be Stupid", "date_published": "2020-04-14T13:27:52-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-14T13:27:52-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

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Known for more than forty years as America’s premier satirist of popular music and culture, “Weird Al” Yankovic (aka, Alfred Matthew Yankovic ) has had almost as many careers. He has accordingly been a comedian, singer/songwriter, music producer, actor, director, and writer–often all at the same time. Mr. Yankovic has won five Grammy Awards and has sold more comedy recordings than anyone else in history.

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Sam Andeson writes on the legend of Weird Al Yankovic :

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Weird Al has now been releasing song parodies for seven presidential administrations. He has outlasted two popes and five Supreme Court justices. He is one of only five artists (along with his early muses, Michael Jackson and Madonna) to have had a Top 40 single in each of the last four decades. Yankovic has turned out to be one of America’s great renewable resources. He is a timeless force that expresses itself through hyperspecific cultural moments, the way heat from the center of the earth manifests, on the surface, through the particularity of geysers. In 1996, after Coolio’s “Gangsta’s Paradise” became a national earworm, Weird Al took its thumping beat and its heavenly choir and turned it into “Amish Paradise,” a ridiculous banger about rural chores. When Chamillionaire’s “Ridin.” hit No. 1 in 2006, Weird Al took a rap about driving in a car loaded with drugs and translated it into a monologue about the glories of being a nerd. Whatever is popular at the moment, Yankovic can hack into its source code and reprogram it.

His work has inspired waves of creative nerds. Andy Samberg, the actor and a member of the comedy group the Lonely Island, told me that he grew up having Weird Al dance parties with his family. “Each new generation of younger kids is like, ‘Wait, this can exist?’” Samberg said.

Lin-Manuel Miranda, a Weird Al obsessive, credits Yankovic as an influence on “Hamilton.” Miranda once lip-synced “Taco Grande” (a Mexican-food-themed parody of the 1990 hit “Rico Suave”) in front of his sixth-grade class, He told me that he prefers many Weird Al songs to the originals. “Weird Al is a perfectionist,” Miranda said. “Every bit as much as Michael Jackson or Kurt Cobain or Madonna or any artist he has ever spoofed. So you get the musical power of the original along with this incredible twist of Weird Al’s voice and Weird Al’s brain. The original songs lose none of their power, even when they’re on a polka with burping sound effects in the background. In fact, it accelerates their power. It’s both earnest and a parody.”

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Known for more than forty years as America’s premier satirist of popular music and culture, “Weird Al” Yankovic (aka, Alfred Matthew Yankovic ) has had almost as many careers. He has accordingly been a comedian, singer/songwriter, music producer, actor, director, and writer–often all at the same time. Mr. Yankovic has won five Grammy Awards and has sold more comedy recordings than anyone else in history.

\n\n

Sam Andeson writes on the legend of Weird Al Yankovic :

\n\n

Weird Al has now been releasing song parodies for seven presidential administrations. He has outlasted two popes and five Supreme Court justices. He is one of only five artists (along with his early muses, Michael Jackson and Madonna) to have had a Top 40 single in each of the last four decades. Yankovic has turned out to be one of America’s great renewable resources. He is a timeless force that expresses itself through hyperspecific cultural moments, the way heat from the center of the earth manifests, on the surface, through the particularity of geysers. In 1996, after Coolio’s “Gangsta’s Paradise” became a national earworm, Weird Al took its thumping beat and its heavenly choir and turned it into “Amish Paradise,” a ridiculous banger about rural chores. When Chamillionaire’s “Ridin.” hit No. 1 in 2006, Weird Al took a rap about driving in a car loaded with drugs and translated it into a monologue about the glories of being a nerd. Whatever is popular at the moment, Yankovic can hack into its source code and reprogram it.

His work has inspired waves of creative nerds. Andy Samberg, the actor and a member of the comedy group the Lonely Island, told me that he grew up having Weird Al dance parties with his family. “Each new generation of younger kids is like, ‘Wait, this can exist?’” Samberg said.

Lin-Manuel Miranda, a Weird Al obsessive, credits Yankovic as an influence on “Hamilton.” Miranda once lip-synced “Taco Grande” (a Mexican-food-themed parody of the 1990 hit “Rico Suave”) in front of his sixth-grade class, He told me that he prefers many Weird Al songs to the originals. “Weird Al is a perfectionist,” Miranda said. “Every bit as much as Michael Jackson or Kurt Cobain or Madonna or any artist he has ever spoofed. So you get the musical power of the original along with this incredible twist of Weird Al’s voice and Weird Al’s brain. The original songs lose none of their power, even when they’re on a polka with burping sound effects in the background. In fact, it accelerates their power. It’s both earnest and a parody.”

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/14/a-crash-course-on-journalism/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/14/a-crash-course-on-journalism/", "title": "A crash course on Journalism", "date_published": "2020-04-14T12:58:12-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-14T12:58:12-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

CBS News' Paula Reid just gave a crash course on how to speaking truth to power:

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\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

CBS News' Paula Reid just gave a crash course on how to speaking truth to power:

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\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/13/millennials-dont-stand-a-chance/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/13/millennials-dont-stand-a-chance/", "title": "Millennials Don’t Stand a Chance", "date_published": "2020-04-13T11:13:57-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-13T11:13:57-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

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Annie Lowery in The Atlantic:

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Put it all together, and the Millennials had no chance to build the kind of nest eggs that older generations did—the financial cushions that help people weather catastrophes, provide support to sick or down-on-their luck relatives, start businesses, invest in real estate, or go back to school. Going into the 2008 financial crisis, Gen Xers had twice the assets that Millennials have today; right now, Gen Xers have four times the assets and double the savings of younger adults.

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How are all of these people going to contribute to the US economy when they are struggling to just get by? It’s time to bail out the millennials, not the mega corporations.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Annie Lowery in The Atlantic:

\n\n

Put it all together, and the Millennials had no chance to build the kind of nest eggs that older generations did—the financial cushions that help people weather catastrophes, provide support to sick or down-on-their luck relatives, start businesses, invest in real estate, or go back to school. Going into the 2008 financial crisis, Gen Xers had twice the assets that Millennials have today; right now, Gen Xers have four times the assets and double the savings of younger adults.

\n\n\n

How are all of these people going to contribute to the US economy when they are struggling to just get by? It’s time to bail out the millennials, not the mega corporations.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/12/why-us-nurses-are-wearing-garbage-bags/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/12/why-us-nurses-are-wearing-garbage-bags/", "title": "Why US Nurses are wearing Garbage bags", "date_published": "2020-04-12T02:37:21-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-12T02:37:21-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

For the longest time, US politicians were assuring the US had the best health care system in the world. But the Covid-19 pandemic has shown just how fragile and dangerous our healthcare system is.

\n\n

With an administration that will not step in to help, it is each man for himself. States are biding against each other and the federal government. Companies such as 3M are selling to the highest bidder - even shipping product to foreign nations instead of meeting the US demand.

\n\n

Susan B. Glasser for the New York Times:

\n\n

A few weeks ago, it was already apparent that the federal response to the pandemic was late, disorganized, and putting large numbers of American lives at risk. What is becoming apparent now is something just as unthinkable: Trump’s reluctance to have the federal government play the role for which it was designed in such an emergency. At his press briefing last week, Kushner introduced Polowczyk, the Navy rear admiral, as “the best man we have in the country for logistics and supplies.” This week, a senior Administration official told me that not only have supplies been flowing from the federal government to where they are needed but the worst-case scenarios of hospitals literally running out of ventilators appear to have been averted for now. But Kushner’s public statements, and those of the President over the past couple weeks, griping about various Democratic governors and complaining about their inflated demands on the national stockpile, suggest states and cities are stuck in a Darwinian competition with one another, and with the federal government, for scarce supplies, and there is little transparency in how or why FEMA's decisions are being made.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

For the longest time, US politicians were assuring the US had the best health care system in the world. But the Covid-19 pandemic has shown just how fragile and dangerous our healthcare system is.

\n\n

With an administration that will not step in to help, it is each man for himself. States are biding against each other and the federal government. Companies such as 3M are selling to the highest bidder - even shipping product to foreign nations instead of meeting the US demand.

\n\n

Susan B. Glasser for the New York Times:

\n\n

A few weeks ago, it was already apparent that the federal response to the pandemic was late, disorganized, and putting large numbers of American lives at risk. What is becoming apparent now is something just as unthinkable: Trump’s reluctance to have the federal government play the role for which it was designed in such an emergency. At his press briefing last week, Kushner introduced Polowczyk, the Navy rear admiral, as “the best man we have in the country for logistics and supplies.” This week, a senior Administration official told me that not only have supplies been flowing from the federal government to where they are needed but the worst-case scenarios of hospitals literally running out of ventilators appear to have been averted for now. But Kushner’s public statements, and those of the President over the past couple weeks, griping about various Democratic governors and complaining about their inflated demands on the national stockpile, suggest states and cities are stuck in a Darwinian competition with one another, and with the federal government, for scarce supplies, and there is little transparency in how or why FEMA's decisions are being made.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/11/americans-need-straight-answers/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/11/americans-need-straight-answers/", "title": "Americans Need Straight Answers", "date_published": "2020-04-11T23:49:55-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-11T23:49:55-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Michel Martin asks Rep. Porter about Covid-19 testing and about the handling of the government’s handling of the pandemic response - another great interview by Amanpour & Co.

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\n\n\n


\nI think Rep. Katie Porter is amazing - another Democratic Representative that Joe Biden should consider as a running mate.

\n", "content_html": "

Michel Martin asks Rep. Porter about Covid-19 testing and about the handling of the government’s handling of the pandemic response - another great interview by Amanpour & Co.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\nI think Rep. Katie Porter is amazing - another Democratic Representative that Joe Biden should consider as a running mate.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/11/privacy-friendly-contact-tracing/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/11/privacy-friendly-contact-tracing/", "title": "Privacy Friendly Contact Tracing", "date_published": "2020-04-11T14:53:10-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-11T14:53:10-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Nicky Case has a great comic explaining of how we can use apps to automatically do contact tracing for Covid-19 infections while protecting people’s privacy.

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\n", "content_html": "

Nicky Case has a great comic explaining of how we can use apps to automatically do contact tracing for Covid-19 infections while protecting people’s privacy.

\n\n

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/10/full-recovery-unlikely/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/10/full-recovery-unlikely/", "title": "Full Recovery Unlikely", "date_published": "2020-04-10T14:13:15-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-10T14:13:15-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Alec Levenson for the MIT Sloan Management has a bleak pessimistic view on an eventual economic recovery from the Corona virus pandemic.

\n\n

It takes time for business and society to settle into a new normal following a large-scale economic disruption. Even if the health care challenges from COVID-19 are solved before the end of this year, which seems highly unlikely, businesses will face many more months, and likely years, beyond the anticipated adjustment periods budgeted in their scenario planning and operations.

The shifts in consumer demand will require expansion in some industries and contraction in others. Future growth in consumer spending is likely to be slower than it has been for many years. Increased government regulation of gig and other nonregular work will require adaptation and changes in work practices. The disruptions in face-to-face work will be a drag on economic efficiency, leading to slower growth in revenues, lower profit margins, and reduced cash flow. And reconfiguring business models for greater resiliency will require significant investments of working capital into operations in ways that will not show any ROI until the next pandemic hits.

We will get to the new normal eventually. The corporate leaders who recognize these new challenges now and move quickly to adapt to them will put their companies in the best position to thrive throughout the 2020s.

\n\n\n

I’ll take a much more optimistic view. This will force issues such as the need for universal healthcare, workers rights, and corporate regulations to be strengthened and enacted.

\n\n

While this will take the better part of the decade, we will recover from this.

\n", "content_html": "

Alec Levenson for the MIT Sloan Management has a bleak pessimistic view on an eventual economic recovery from the Corona virus pandemic.

\n\n

It takes time for business and society to settle into a new normal following a large-scale economic disruption. Even if the health care challenges from COVID-19 are solved before the end of this year, which seems highly unlikely, businesses will face many more months, and likely years, beyond the anticipated adjustment periods budgeted in their scenario planning and operations.

The shifts in consumer demand will require expansion in some industries and contraction in others. Future growth in consumer spending is likely to be slower than it has been for many years. Increased government regulation of gig and other nonregular work will require adaptation and changes in work practices. The disruptions in face-to-face work will be a drag on economic efficiency, leading to slower growth in revenues, lower profit margins, and reduced cash flow. And reconfiguring business models for greater resiliency will require significant investments of working capital into operations in ways that will not show any ROI until the next pandemic hits.

We will get to the new normal eventually. The corporate leaders who recognize these new challenges now and move quickly to adapt to them will put their companies in the best position to thrive throughout the 2020s.

\n\n\n

I’ll take a much more optimistic view. This will force issues such as the need for universal healthcare, workers rights, and corporate regulations to be strengthened and enacted.

\n\n

While this will take the better part of the decade, we will recover from this.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/09/bernie-sanders-drop-out/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/09/bernie-sanders-drop-out/", "title": "Bernie Sanders Suspends Campaign", "date_published": "2020-04-09T21:40:53-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-09T21:40:53-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n
\nSydney Ember in the New York Times writes:

\n\n

Mr. Sanders, 78, leaves the campaign having almost single-handedly moved the Democratic Party to the left. He inspired the modern progressive movement with his expansive policy agenda and his impassioned message that “health care is a human right,” and electrified a legion of loyal supporters who wholeheartedly embraced his promise to lift up those who need it most. He also transformed the way Democratic campaigns raised money, eschewing big fund-raisers and instead relying on an army of small-dollar donors.

\n\n

Americans know that he is the son and grandson of immigrants, an old-school, Great Society, FDR Democrat who puts workers 1st.

\n", "content_html": "

\n
\nSydney Ember in the New York Times writes:

\n\n

Mr. Sanders, 78, leaves the campaign having almost single-handedly moved the Democratic Party to the left. He inspired the modern progressive movement with his expansive policy agenda and his impassioned message that “health care is a human right,” and electrified a legion of loyal supporters who wholeheartedly embraced his promise to lift up those who need it most. He also transformed the way Democratic campaigns raised money, eschewing big fund-raisers and instead relying on an army of small-dollar donors.

\n\n

Americans know that he is the son and grandson of immigrants, an old-school, Great Society, FDR Democrat who puts workers 1st.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/07/oil-companies-collapse-clean-energy-thrives/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/07/oil-companies-collapse-clean-energy-thrives/", "title": "Oil companies collapse, Clean energy thrives", "date_published": "2020-04-07T22:48:33-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-07T22:48:33-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n
\nIvan Penn in the New York Times writes:

\n\n

A few years ago, the kind of double-digit drop in oil and gas prices the world is experiencing now because of the coronavirus pandemic might have increased the use of fossil fuels and hurt renewable energy sources like wind and solar farms.

That is not happening.

In fact, renewable energy sources are set to account for nearly 21 percent of the electricity the United States uses for the first time this year, up from about 18 percent last year and 10 percent in 2010, according to one forecast published last week. And while work on some solar and wind projects has been delayed by the outbreak, industry executives and analysts expect the renewable business to continue growing in 2020 and next year even as oil, gas and coal companies struggle financially or seek bankruptcy protection.

\n\n\n

While oil and coal will be around for some time to come, they will continue to be a shrinking industry. The switch to clean energy bring be more jobs, cleaner environment, less medical issues, and energy independence. This is even more reason for the US to support clean energy initiatives.

\n", "content_html": "

\n
\nIvan Penn in the New York Times writes:

\n\n

A few years ago, the kind of double-digit drop in oil and gas prices the world is experiencing now because of the coronavirus pandemic might have increased the use of fossil fuels and hurt renewable energy sources like wind and solar farms.

That is not happening.

In fact, renewable energy sources are set to account for nearly 21 percent of the electricity the United States uses for the first time this year, up from about 18 percent last year and 10 percent in 2010, according to one forecast published last week. And while work on some solar and wind projects has been delayed by the outbreak, industry executives and analysts expect the renewable business to continue growing in 2020 and next year even as oil, gas and coal companies struggle financially or seek bankruptcy protection.

\n\n\n

While oil and coal will be around for some time to come, they will continue to be a shrinking industry. The switch to clean energy bring be more jobs, cleaner environment, less medical issues, and energy independence. This is even more reason for the US to support clean energy initiatives.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/07/covid-19-a-geopolitical-game-changer/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/07/covid-19-a-geopolitical-game-changer/", "title": "COVID-19 a Geopolitical Game-Changer?", "date_published": "2020-04-07T14:00:26-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-07T14:00:26-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Can the Covid-19 epidemic upturn the global power structure going forward? Michel Duclos at Institut Montaigne makes a good case that it just might:

\n\n

“Great Power competition” – dominated practically by the rivalry between the United States and China, as well as Russia – has become the dominant factor. International institutions have entered a phase of weakening, due partly to an American withdrawal, and partly to discord among major powers. It follows that the WHO is not playing the central role it should in the Covid-19 crisis. It was informed too late by China, to the detriment of other states' ability to react, and having to comply with Chinese injunctions before declaring a state of pandemic. WHO gives the sense that it is echoing a “Chinese line” on the fight against the virus. China, by the way, is reaping the benefits of the investment it has put in the UN system in recent years. This brings us to our second starting point: the increased space taken by China and Asia in world affairs.

\n\n

It had been commonplace for years to observe the rise of China and Asia. Covid-19 provides a somewhat negative illustration of this, but one that is immediately clear. Beijing’s initial policy of opacity, as noted above, contributed greatly to the spread of the pandemic. But the most striking element is elsewhere. On the one hand, because of value chains’ structure today, the shutdown of a large part of the Chinese economy has had, and continues to have, major effects on the world economy; unlike 2008, today’s financial crisis is second only to a crisis of supply and demand in the real economy. On the other hand, the “Great Power competition” not only puts international solidarity on the back burner, but above all translates into an astonishing “soft power”competition between China and its main rivals.

\n\n

From this point of view, we have witnessed an unprecedented demonstration. The People’s Republic of China was in difficulty at the beginning of the crisis, due to its initial attitude of repression of Wuhan’s whistle-blowers; forced closures of its factories; and then appearing to overcome the epidemic thanks to authoritarian quarantine measures, combined with an unprecedented use of artificial intelligence. Finally, China emerged from the ordeal while Europeans, now the main area of infection, were slow to implement drastic measures, while the Trump administration demonstrated its messy incompetence. China today is reviving its economy at a time when stock markets are collapsing in the West. It is fighting against the misplaced xenophobic insinuations of Donald Trump in an absurd battle of disinformation, and above all, it is acting as a lifeline for Italy or Serbia, partly because of the clumsiness of their European partners. In the emerging world, China is certainly appearing as the power that can assist internationally, which was once the United States’ go-to role.

\n\n

China perhaps has an interest in not pushing this propaganda war too far, as it is not immune to a Covid-19 rebound, or other twists and turns. However, for now at least, the debate between authoritarianism, populism and liberalism is being revived in our democracies. It is too early to know how this debate will turn out. For some, the scale of the crisis can lead to a rehabilitation of expertise, institutions and international cooperation, and devalues the populists' more cookie-cutter approach. Others, on the other hand, inspired by sovereigntist ideas, argue that the European institutions have proved to be irrelevant and had to support and pursue measures to re-establish border controls.

\n\n

The kind of undeclared Cold War that had been brewing for some time shows its true face under the harsh light of Covid-19.

\n\n

What we would like to especially note at this point is the conjunction that is taking place before our eyes between geopolitical competition and competing political models, along the lines of lessons that emerged from Institut Montaigne’s study on “neo-authoritarians”. The “Chinese model” emerges in this case as a reference for the global anti-liberal current, while China shamelessly tries to capitalize on the country’s “victory against the virus” to promote its political system. The kind of undeclared Cold War that had been brewing for some time shows its true face under the harsh light of Covid-19.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Can the Covid-19 epidemic upturn the global power structure going forward? Michel Duclos at Institut Montaigne makes a good case that it just might:

\n\n

“Great Power competition” – dominated practically by the rivalry between the United States and China, as well as Russia – has become the dominant factor. International institutions have entered a phase of weakening, due partly to an American withdrawal, and partly to discord among major powers. It follows that the WHO is not playing the central role it should in the Covid-19 crisis. It was informed too late by China, to the detriment of other states' ability to react, and having to comply with Chinese injunctions before declaring a state of pandemic. WHO gives the sense that it is echoing a “Chinese line” on the fight against the virus. China, by the way, is reaping the benefits of the investment it has put in the UN system in recent years. This brings us to our second starting point: the increased space taken by China and Asia in world affairs.

\n\n

It had been commonplace for years to observe the rise of China and Asia. Covid-19 provides a somewhat negative illustration of this, but one that is immediately clear. Beijing’s initial policy of opacity, as noted above, contributed greatly to the spread of the pandemic. But the most striking element is elsewhere. On the one hand, because of value chains’ structure today, the shutdown of a large part of the Chinese economy has had, and continues to have, major effects on the world economy; unlike 2008, today’s financial crisis is second only to a crisis of supply and demand in the real economy. On the other hand, the “Great Power competition” not only puts international solidarity on the back burner, but above all translates into an astonishing “soft power”competition between China and its main rivals.

\n\n

From this point of view, we have witnessed an unprecedented demonstration. The People’s Republic of China was in difficulty at the beginning of the crisis, due to its initial attitude of repression of Wuhan’s whistle-blowers; forced closures of its factories; and then appearing to overcome the epidemic thanks to authoritarian quarantine measures, combined with an unprecedented use of artificial intelligence. Finally, China emerged from the ordeal while Europeans, now the main area of infection, were slow to implement drastic measures, while the Trump administration demonstrated its messy incompetence. China today is reviving its economy at a time when stock markets are collapsing in the West. It is fighting against the misplaced xenophobic insinuations of Donald Trump in an absurd battle of disinformation, and above all, it is acting as a lifeline for Italy or Serbia, partly because of the clumsiness of their European partners. In the emerging world, China is certainly appearing as the power that can assist internationally, which was once the United States’ go-to role.

\n\n

China perhaps has an interest in not pushing this propaganda war too far, as it is not immune to a Covid-19 rebound, or other twists and turns. However, for now at least, the debate between authoritarianism, populism and liberalism is being revived in our democracies. It is too early to know how this debate will turn out. For some, the scale of the crisis can lead to a rehabilitation of expertise, institutions and international cooperation, and devalues the populists' more cookie-cutter approach. Others, on the other hand, inspired by sovereigntist ideas, argue that the European institutions have proved to be irrelevant and had to support and pursue measures to re-establish border controls.

\n\n

The kind of undeclared Cold War that had been brewing for some time shows its true face under the harsh light of Covid-19.

\n\n

What we would like to especially note at this point is the conjunction that is taking place before our eyes between geopolitical competition and competing political models, along the lines of lessons that emerged from Institut Montaigne’s study on “neo-authoritarians”. The “Chinese model” emerges in this case as a reference for the global anti-liberal current, while China shamelessly tries to capitalize on the country’s “victory against the virus” to promote its political system. The kind of undeclared Cold War that had been brewing for some time shows its true face under the harsh light of Covid-19.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/06/republican-mea-culpa/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/06/republican-mea-culpa/", "title": "Republican Mea culpa?", "date_published": "2020-04-06T00:59:23-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-06T00:59:23-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Stuart Stevens, author of “It Was All a Lie: How the Republican Party Became Donald Trump,” is a well known and highly successful Republican strategist admits that the party is deeply flawed and his role in it. The first step to fixing a problem is to admit there is one. Let us hope more Republican have a similar about face.

\n\n

Don’t just blame President Trump. Blame me — and all the other Republicans who aided and abetted and, yes, benefited from protecting a political party that has become dangerous to America. Some of us knew better.

But we built this moment. And then we looked the other way.

Many of us heard a warning sound we chose to ignore, like that rattle in your car you hear but figure will go away. Now we’re broken down, with plenty of time to think about what should have been done.

The failures of the government’s response to the coronavirus crisis can be traced directly to some of the toxic fantasies now dear to the Republican Party. Here are a few: Government is bad. Establishment experts are overrated or just plain wrong. Science is suspect. And we can go it alone, the world be damned.

All of these are wrong, of course. But we didn’t get here overnight. It took practice.

\n\n\n

And here is an excellent interview by Michel Martin at Amanpour & Co. :

\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Stuart Stevens, author of “It Was All a Lie: How the Republican Party Became Donald Trump,” is a well known and highly successful Republican strategist admits that the party is deeply flawed and his role in it. The first step to fixing a problem is to admit there is one. Let us hope more Republican have a similar about face.

\n\n

Don’t just blame President Trump. Blame me — and all the other Republicans who aided and abetted and, yes, benefited from protecting a political party that has become dangerous to America. Some of us knew better.

But we built this moment. And then we looked the other way.

Many of us heard a warning sound we chose to ignore, like that rattle in your car you hear but figure will go away. Now we’re broken down, with plenty of time to think about what should have been done.

The failures of the government’s response to the coronavirus crisis can be traced directly to some of the toxic fantasies now dear to the Republican Party. Here are a few: Government is bad. Establishment experts are overrated or just plain wrong. Science is suspect. And we can go it alone, the world be damned.

All of these are wrong, of course. But we didn’t get here overnight. It took practice.

\n\n\n

And here is an excellent interview by Michel Martin at Amanpour & Co. :

\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/05/coronavirus-illustration/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/05/coronavirus-illustration/", "title": "Coronavirus Illustration", "date_published": "2020-04-05T23:49:52-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-05T23:49:52-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n
\n
\nWe have all seen the above image of this silent enemy by now. Here is how Alissa Eckert describes her illustration of the novel Coronavirus:

\n\n

But for the coronavirus illustration, they went with what professional medical artists call a “beauty shot”: a detailed, solo close-up.

“We just call attention to the one virus,” she said.

The novel coronavirus, like all viruses, is covered with proteins that give it its character and traits. There are the spike proteins, or S-proteins — the red clusters in the image — which allow the virus to attach to human cells. Envelope or E-proteins, represented by yellow crumbs, help it get into those cells. And membrane proteins, or M-proteins, shown in orange, give the virus its form.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n
\n
\nWe have all seen the above image of this silent enemy by now. Here is how Alissa Eckert describes her illustration of the novel Coronavirus:

\n\n

But for the coronavirus illustration, they went with what professional medical artists call a “beauty shot”: a detailed, solo close-up.

“We just call attention to the one virus,” she said.

The novel coronavirus, like all viruses, is covered with proteins that give it its character and traits. There are the spike proteins, or S-proteins — the red clusters in the image — which allow the virus to attach to human cells. Envelope or E-proteins, represented by yellow crumbs, help it get into those cells. And membrane proteins, or M-proteins, shown in orange, give the virus its form.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/04/the-fox-effect/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/04/the-fox-effect/", "title": "The Fox Effect", "date_published": "2020-04-04T15:15:09-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-04T15:15:09-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

When asked if Fox coverage will cause people to die, Ashish Jha:

\n\n

Yes. Some commentators in the right-wing media spread a very specific type of misinformation that I think has been very harmful

\n\n
\n\n\n


\n\n

The Fox organization is concerned about being sued - good. And I hope they they do. While they are at it, lock up all the anchors too.

\n", "content_html": "

When asked if Fox coverage will cause people to die, Ashish Jha:

\n\n

Yes. Some commentators in the right-wing media spread a very specific type of misinformation that I think has been very harmful

\n\n
\n\n\n


\n\n

The Fox organization is concerned about being sued - good. And I hope they they do. While they are at it, lock up all the anchors too.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/04/usa-is-now-a-sh-star-t-hole-country/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/04/usa-is-now-a-sh-star-t-hole-country/", "title": "USA is now a sh*t hole country", "date_published": "2020-04-04T03:22:18-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-04T03:22:18-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

As of today (April 4th, 2020) - our current situation:

\n\n\n\n\n

The United States of America is now a third world country. Or as our President likes to say - a Shit Hole Country.

\n\n

Thanks Donald Trump. And thank you Republicans. History will not remember you kindly. But it is us - the American people who are ultimately responsible. We put these people in power.

\n\n

A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves and traitors are not victims, but accomplices.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

As of today (April 4th, 2020) - our current situation:

\n\n\n\n\n

The United States of America is now a third world country. Or as our President likes to say - a Shit Hole Country.

\n\n

Thanks Donald Trump. And thank you Republicans. History will not remember you kindly. But it is us - the American people who are ultimately responsible. We put these people in power.

\n\n

A people that elect corrupt politicians, imposters, thieves and traitors are not victims, but accomplices.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/04/do-it-yourself-masks/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/04/do-it-yourself-masks/", "title": "do-it-yourself masks", "date_published": "2020-04-04T00:38:17-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-04T00:38:17-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

In the recommendation published online Friday, the CDC said that because the virus can “spread between people interacting in close proximity,” they would recommend “wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain (e.g., grocery stores and pharmacies) especially in areas of significant community-based transmission.”

\n\n

Here are detailed instructions for do-it-yourself masks made from whatever materials you have available.

\n\n

Stay at home, wash your hands, use hand sanitizer, keep your distance from others when out, and, when out, wear a face mask.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

In the recommendation published online Friday, the CDC said that because the virus can “spread between people interacting in close proximity,” they would recommend “wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain (e.g., grocery stores and pharmacies) especially in areas of significant community-based transmission.”

\n\n

Here are detailed instructions for do-it-yourself masks made from whatever materials you have available.

\n\n

Stay at home, wash your hands, use hand sanitizer, keep your distance from others when out, and, when out, wear a face mask.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/04/the-worm-is-back/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/04/the-worm-is-back/", "title": "The Worm is back!", "date_published": "2020-04-04T00:25:32-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-04T00:25:32-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

I am so glad they went back to the original logo!

\n\n

Enter a cleaner, sleeker design born of the Federal Design Improvement Program and officially introduced in 1975. It featured a simple, red unique type style of the word NASA. The world knew it as “the worm.” Created by the firm of Danne & Blackburn, the logo was honored in 1984 by President Reagan for its simplistic, yet innovative design.

NASA was able to thrive with multiple graphic designs. There was a place for both the meatball and the worm. However, in 1992, the 1970s brand was retired - except on clothing and other souvenir items - in favor of the original late 1950s graphic.

Until today.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

I am so glad they went back to the original logo!

\n\n

Enter a cleaner, sleeker design born of the Federal Design Improvement Program and officially introduced in 1975. It featured a simple, red unique type style of the word NASA. The world knew it as “the worm.” Created by the firm of Danne & Blackburn, the logo was honored in 1984 by President Reagan for its simplistic, yet innovative design.

NASA was able to thrive with multiple graphic designs. There was a place for both the meatball and the worm. However, in 1992, the 1970s brand was retired - except on clothing and other souvenir items - in favor of the original late 1950s graphic.

Until today.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/03/stay-the-f-star-ck-home/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/03/stay-the-f-star-ck-home/", "title": "Stay the F*ck Home", "date_published": "2020-04-03T19:10:37-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-03T19:10:37-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Samuel L. Jackson recites a short story/poem by Adam Mansbach (author of Go the Fuck to Sleep) to Jimmy Kimmel called Stay the Fuck at Home (starts at 6:00).

\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Samuel L. Jackson recites a short story/poem by Adam Mansbach (author of Go the Fuck to Sleep) to Jimmy Kimmel called Stay the Fuck at Home (starts at 6:00).

\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/03/reality-has-endorsed-bernie-sanders/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/03/reality-has-endorsed-bernie-sanders/", "title": "Reality has endorsed Bernie Sanders", "date_published": "2020-04-03T11:59:11-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-03T11:59:11-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

In an opinion piece in The New Yorker:

\n\n

The argument for resuming a viable social-welfare state is about not only attending to the immediate needs of tens of millions of people but also reëstablishing social connectivity, collective responsibility, and a sense of common purpose, if not common wealth. In an unrelenting and unemotional way, covid-19 is demonstrating the vastness of our human connection and mutuality. Our collectivity must be borne out in public policies that repair the friable welfare infrastructure that threatens to collapse beneath our social weight. A society that allows hundreds of thousands of home health-care workers to labor without health insurance, that keeps school buildings open so that black and brown children can eat and be sheltered, that allows millionaires to stow their wealth in empty apartments while homeless families navigate the streets, that threatens eviction and loan defaults while hundreds of millions are mandated to stay inside to suppress the virus, is bewildering in its incoherence and inhumanity.

Naomi Klein has written about how the political class has used social catastrophes to create policies that allow for private plunder. She calls it “disaster capitalism,” or the “shock doctrine.” But she has also written that, in each of these moments, there are also opportunities for ordinary people to transform their conditions in ways that benefit humanity. The class-driven hierarchy of our society will encourage the spread of this virus unless dramatic and previously unthinkable solutions are immediately put on the table. As Sanders has counselled, we must think in unprecedented ways. This includes universal health care, an indefinite moratorium on evictions and foreclosures, the cancellation of student-loan debt, a universal basic income, and the reversal of all cuts to food stamps. These are the basic measures that can staunch the immediate crisis of deprivation—of millions of layoffs and millions more to come.

The Sanders campaign was an entry point to this discussion. It has shown public appetite, even desire, for vast spending and new programs. These desires did not translate into votes because they seemed like a risky endeavor when the consequence was four more years of Trump. But the mushrooming crisis of covid-19 is changing the calculus. As federal officials announce new trillion-dollar aid packages daily, we can never go back to banal discussions of “How will we pay for it?” How can we not? Now is a moment to remake our society anew.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

In an opinion piece in The New Yorker:

\n\n

The argument for resuming a viable social-welfare state is about not only attending to the immediate needs of tens of millions of people but also reëstablishing social connectivity, collective responsibility, and a sense of common purpose, if not common wealth. In an unrelenting and unemotional way, covid-19 is demonstrating the vastness of our human connection and mutuality. Our collectivity must be borne out in public policies that repair the friable welfare infrastructure that threatens to collapse beneath our social weight. A society that allows hundreds of thousands of home health-care workers to labor without health insurance, that keeps school buildings open so that black and brown children can eat and be sheltered, that allows millionaires to stow their wealth in empty apartments while homeless families navigate the streets, that threatens eviction and loan defaults while hundreds of millions are mandated to stay inside to suppress the virus, is bewildering in its incoherence and inhumanity.

Naomi Klein has written about how the political class has used social catastrophes to create policies that allow for private plunder. She calls it “disaster capitalism,” or the “shock doctrine.” But she has also written that, in each of these moments, there are also opportunities for ordinary people to transform their conditions in ways that benefit humanity. The class-driven hierarchy of our society will encourage the spread of this virus unless dramatic and previously unthinkable solutions are immediately put on the table. As Sanders has counselled, we must think in unprecedented ways. This includes universal health care, an indefinite moratorium on evictions and foreclosures, the cancellation of student-loan debt, a universal basic income, and the reversal of all cuts to food stamps. These are the basic measures that can staunch the immediate crisis of deprivation—of millions of layoffs and millions more to come.

The Sanders campaign was an entry point to this discussion. It has shown public appetite, even desire, for vast spending and new programs. These desires did not translate into votes because they seemed like a risky endeavor when the consequence was four more years of Trump. But the mushrooming crisis of covid-19 is changing the calculus. As federal officials announce new trillion-dollar aid packages daily, we can never go back to banal discussions of “How will we pay for it?” How can we not? Now is a moment to remake our society anew.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/03/millions-lose-healthcare-biden-doesnt-care/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/03/millions-lose-healthcare-biden-doesnt-care/", "title": " Millions lose healthcare, Biden doesn't care", "date_published": "2020-04-03T11:52:38-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-03T11:52:38-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Millions are getting kicked of their company sponsored health care. And Biden, doesn’t care.

\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Millions are getting kicked of their company sponsored health care. And Biden, doesn’t care.

\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/03/covid-19-travel-posters/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/03/covid-19-travel-posters/", "title": "Covid-19 travel posters", "date_published": "2020-04-03T00:31:09-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-03T00:31:09-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Jennifer Baer has created some travel posters for the world wide pandemic. They are available for purchase here. Here are is my favorite:

\n\n

\n", "content_html": "

Jennifer Baer has created some travel posters for the world wide pandemic. They are available for purchase here. Here are is my favorite:

\n\n

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/02/texas-sh-star-t-show/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/02/texas-sh-star-t-show/", "title": "Trump’s Border Wall-Texas Sh*t Show!", "date_published": "2020-04-02T22:41:45-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-02T22:41:45-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

When racism meets industrial scale arts and craft. Samantha Bee’s Full Frontal exposes ridiculous the border wall is. It is amazing that this is happening in America.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\nI would pay to see Donald Trump vs Nayda Alvarez !

\n", "content_html": "

When racism meets industrial scale arts and craft. Samantha Bee’s Full Frontal exposes ridiculous the border wall is. It is amazing that this is happening in America.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\nI would pay to see Donald Trump vs Nayda Alvarez !

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/02/trump-on-covid-19-health-care/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/02/trump-on-covid-19-health-care/", "title": "Trump & Pence on healthcare", "date_published": "2020-04-02T21:49:52-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-02T21:49:52-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

When Pence was asked by Fox no less, about how we are going to cover Americans without healthcare - Pence:

\n\n

So I was at Walmart this afternoon in South Carolina ….

\n\n
\n\n\n


\n\n

The pandemic has shown not only the fragile state of the economy, but how flawed our health care system is.

\n\n

With the Covid-19 pandemic expected to cause 20+ million being unemployed - adding to the already 40+ million people without health insurance, now is the time for a single payer health care initiative if ever there was one.

\n\n

If they are serious, here is how you would answer that question:

\n\n

For now, the next stimulus bill will cover all Corona Virus related medical costs. Americans will not have to worry. Once we get past this pandemic - and we will - I will be meeting with both sides of the isle so that we can provide every American guaranteed access to the health care they need

\n\n

But instead we get a long winded answer, that talks about how Walmart is stepping up to the plate. Trump isn’t going to do anything. Biden won’t either. We need Bernie and his Revolution.

\n", "content_html": "

When Pence was asked by Fox no less, about how we are going to cover Americans without healthcare - Pence:

\n\n

So I was at Walmart this afternoon in South Carolina ….

\n\n
\n\n\n


\n\n

The pandemic has shown not only the fragile state of the economy, but how flawed our health care system is.

\n\n

With the Covid-19 pandemic expected to cause 20+ million being unemployed - adding to the already 40+ million people without health insurance, now is the time for a single payer health care initiative if ever there was one.

\n\n

If they are serious, here is how you would answer that question:

\n\n

For now, the next stimulus bill will cover all Corona Virus related medical costs. Americans will not have to worry. Once we get past this pandemic - and we will - I will be meeting with both sides of the isle so that we can provide every American guaranteed access to the health care they need

\n\n

But instead we get a long winded answer, that talks about how Walmart is stepping up to the plate. Trump isn’t going to do anything. Biden won’t either. We need Bernie and his Revolution.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/04/01/release-the-original-trilogy/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/04/01/release-the-original-trilogy/", "title": "Release the Original Trilogy", "date_published": "2020-04-01T11:47:21-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-04-01T11:47:21-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

From Drew Stewart over at Wired:

\n\n

For the past 20-plus years, we’ve been allowing the Saga Editions to stand in for the originals in box sets and in retrospective videos. An entire generation is growing up under the mistaken impression that these are the movies their parents fell in love with. We can’t stand for this anymore. The Saga Editions could exist in their own corner, but there is no reason that the original pieces of film history should be locked in a vault somewhere.

\n\n

The problem I’ve been seeing recently is an “I got mine” attitude. Disney doesn’t seem to mind the fan restorations, and the more people go around saying “Well, I guess it’s not coming—doesn’t matter to me because I’ve got [Despecialized/4K77/VHS],” the less likely it becomes that Disney will bother to release the original versions. I’m not saying we can’t have and enjoy the fan preservations, I’m saying we can’t pretend they would be anything compared to a professional restoration of backups we know they have just sitting in an archive. We have to make the demand.

\n\n

Even J.J. Abrams recently said in an interview that “it would be great to have [the originals] available for a mainstream audience.” But when he asked about it, he was told such a release was not necessarily possible “for reasons I don’t quite understand.” So when he watches the originals, he has to watch Despecialized. The man directed two Star Wars movies probably has to pirate the same versions fans do. That’s insane.

\n\n

The simple fact is that the originals are historical artifacts that can stand on their own, separate from the franchise they birthed. For all the reasons detailed here, fans should be able to watch the versions that hit theaters some four decades ago. Moreover, Disney paid $4 billion for this franchise, it should want fans to want to watch them. The demand is there; the company could likely bring a lot of converts to Disney+ if they just met it.

\n\n

This isn’t a call for a boycott, nor is it a call for a Disney/Lucasfilm pile-on. Instead, it’s a call for one thing, and one thing only: #ReleaseTheOriginalTrilogy.

\n", "content_html": "

From Drew Stewart over at Wired:

\n\n

For the past 20-plus years, we’ve been allowing the Saga Editions to stand in for the originals in box sets and in retrospective videos. An entire generation is growing up under the mistaken impression that these are the movies their parents fell in love with. We can’t stand for this anymore. The Saga Editions could exist in their own corner, but there is no reason that the original pieces of film history should be locked in a vault somewhere.

\n\n

The problem I’ve been seeing recently is an “I got mine” attitude. Disney doesn’t seem to mind the fan restorations, and the more people go around saying “Well, I guess it’s not coming—doesn’t matter to me because I’ve got [Despecialized/4K77/VHS],” the less likely it becomes that Disney will bother to release the original versions. I’m not saying we can’t have and enjoy the fan preservations, I’m saying we can’t pretend they would be anything compared to a professional restoration of backups we know they have just sitting in an archive. We have to make the demand.

\n\n

Even J.J. Abrams recently said in an interview that “it would be great to have [the originals] available for a mainstream audience.” But when he asked about it, he was told such a release was not necessarily possible “for reasons I don’t quite understand.” So when he watches the originals, he has to watch Despecialized. The man directed two Star Wars movies probably has to pirate the same versions fans do. That’s insane.

\n\n

The simple fact is that the originals are historical artifacts that can stand on their own, separate from the franchise they birthed. For all the reasons detailed here, fans should be able to watch the versions that hit theaters some four decades ago. Moreover, Disney paid $4 billion for this franchise, it should want fans to want to watch them. The demand is there; the company could likely bring a lot of converts to Disney+ if they just met it.

\n\n

This isn’t a call for a boycott, nor is it a call for a Disney/Lucasfilm pile-on. Instead, it’s a call for one thing, and one thing only: #ReleaseTheOriginalTrilogy.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/03/31/covid-19-and-disdain-toward-expertise/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/03/31/covid-19-and-disdain-toward-expertise/", "title": "virus denial resembles climate denial", "date_published": "2020-03-31T05:48:26-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-03-31T05:48:26-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

Paul Krugman, in an opinion piece in New York Times, has the best explanation on conservative’s virus denial:

\n\n

But I suspect that the disastrous response to Covid-19 has been shaped less by direct self-interest than by two indirect ways in which pandemic policy gets linked to the general prevalence of zombie ideas in right-wing thought.

\n\n

First, when you have a political movement almost entirely built around assertions that any expert can tell you are false, you have to cultivate an attitude of disdain toward expertise, one that spills over into everything. Once you dismiss people who look at evidence on the effects of tax cuts and the effects of greenhouse gas emissions, you’re already primed to dismiss people who look at evidence on disease transmission. This also helps explain the centrality of science-hating religious conservatives to modern conservatism, which has played an important role in Trump’s failure to respond.

\n\n

Second, conservatives do hold one true belief: namely, that there is a kind of halo effect around successful government policies. If public intervention can be effective in one area, they fear — probably rightly — that voters might look more favorably on government intervention in other areas. In principle, public health measures to limit the spread of coronavirus needn’t have much implication for the future of social programs like Medicaid. In practice, the first tends to increase support for the second.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

Paul Krugman, in an opinion piece in New York Times, has the best explanation on conservative’s virus denial:

\n\n

But I suspect that the disastrous response to Covid-19 has been shaped less by direct self-interest than by two indirect ways in which pandemic policy gets linked to the general prevalence of zombie ideas in right-wing thought.

\n\n

First, when you have a political movement almost entirely built around assertions that any expert can tell you are false, you have to cultivate an attitude of disdain toward expertise, one that spills over into everything. Once you dismiss people who look at evidence on the effects of tax cuts and the effects of greenhouse gas emissions, you’re already primed to dismiss people who look at evidence on disease transmission. This also helps explain the centrality of science-hating religious conservatives to modern conservatism, which has played an important role in Trump’s failure to respond.

\n\n

Second, conservatives do hold one true belief: namely, that there is a kind of halo effect around successful government policies. If public intervention can be effective in one area, they fear — probably rightly — that voters might look more favorably on government intervention in other areas. In principle, public health measures to limit the spread of coronavirus needn’t have much implication for the future of social programs like Medicaid. In practice, the first tends to increase support for the second.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/03/31/tracking-spring-breakers-across-the-us/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/03/31/tracking-spring-breakers-across-the-us/", "title": "Tracking spring breakers across the US", "date_published": "2020-03-31T05:31:36-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-03-31T05:31:36-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\nThis video has a great example of why social distancing is so crucial in our fight against COVID-19. Using anonymized cell phone geo-location from people who recklessly gathered on a single beach in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, this video shows just how far those people spread across the country when they went home, possibly taking COVID-19 with them. They ended up all over the country.

\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\nThis video has a great example of why social distancing is so crucial in our fight against COVID-19. Using anonymized cell phone geo-location from people who recklessly gathered on a single beach in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, this video shows just how far those people spread across the country when they went home, possibly taking COVID-19 with them. They ended up all over the country.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/03/31/social-distancing-a-political-statement/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/03/31/social-distancing-a-political-statement/", "title": "Social Distancing - A political divide?", "date_published": "2020-03-31T05:00:57-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-03-31T05:00:57-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

McKay Coppins writes in the Atlantic:

\n\n

At the driving range, while Frost and his like-minded friends slathered on hand sanitizer and kept six feet apart, the white-haired Republicans seemed to delight in breaking the new rules. They made a show of shaking hands, and complained loudly about the “stupid hoax” being propagated by virus alarmists. When their tee times were up, they piled defiantly into golf carts, shoulder to shoulder, and sped off toward the first hole.

Frost felt conflicted. He wanted to encourage the men, some of whom he’d known for years, to be more careful. “I care about their well-being,” he told me. “But it’s a tough call, just personally, because it’s become a political thing.”

\n\n\n

These people should be arrested. Confirmed cases are at almost 788,000 worldwide and 37,000+ dead as of the time of this writing according to Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center. The US has now surpassed Italy as the epicenter with 164,610 cases and 3,170 deaths.

\n\n

It is really scary how a lot of people are taking pride in their ignorance and putting the health of everyone in the country at risk. This is not a hoax. It does not discriminate based on sex, religion, ethnic origin, color of your skin or country of origin. It certainly doesn’t care what your political affiliations are.

\n", "content_html": "

McKay Coppins writes in the Atlantic:

\n\n

At the driving range, while Frost and his like-minded friends slathered on hand sanitizer and kept six feet apart, the white-haired Republicans seemed to delight in breaking the new rules. They made a show of shaking hands, and complained loudly about the “stupid hoax” being propagated by virus alarmists. When their tee times were up, they piled defiantly into golf carts, shoulder to shoulder, and sped off toward the first hole.

Frost felt conflicted. He wanted to encourage the men, some of whom he’d known for years, to be more careful. “I care about their well-being,” he told me. “But it’s a tough call, just personally, because it’s become a political thing.”

\n\n\n

These people should be arrested. Confirmed cases are at almost 788,000 worldwide and 37,000+ dead as of the time of this writing according to Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center. The US has now surpassed Italy as the epicenter with 164,610 cases and 3,170 deaths.

\n\n

It is really scary how a lot of people are taking pride in their ignorance and putting the health of everyone in the country at risk. This is not a hoax. It does not discriminate based on sex, religion, ethnic origin, color of your skin or country of origin. It certainly doesn’t care what your political affiliations are.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/03/31/minimal-photography/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/03/31/minimal-photography/", "title": "Minimal Photography", "date_published": "2020-03-31T04:37:28-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-03-31T04:37:28-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

I came across Marcus Cederberg and his minimalist photography. Amazing work - so calming in this time of uncertainty. What is minimalist photography you ask?

\n\n

To be able to tell as much as possible, with as little as possible, is the challenge with minimalism photography. I try not only to make the viewer somewhat curious but I also often try to tell a small story with the picture. And doing that with as much negative space as possible, is real challenge sometimes !

\n\n\n

Here are some of his photographs - please visit his site and you can follow his work on instagram pages.

\n\n

\n\n


\n\n

\n\n


\n\n

\n", "content_html": "

I came across Marcus Cederberg and his minimalist photography. Amazing work - so calming in this time of uncertainty. What is minimalist photography you ask?

\n\n

To be able to tell as much as possible, with as little as possible, is the challenge with minimalism photography. I try not only to make the viewer somewhat curious but I also often try to tell a small story with the picture. And doing that with as much negative space as possible, is real challenge sometimes !

\n\n\n

Here are some of his photographs - please visit his site and you can follow his work on instagram pages.

\n\n

\n\n


\n\n

\n\n


\n\n

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/03/31/chinas-air-pollution-has-dropped-during-the-coronavirus-outbreak/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/03/31/chinas-air-pollution-has-dropped-during-the-coronavirus-outbreak/", "title": "China's air pollution has dropped during the coronavirus outbreak", "date_published": "2020-03-31T01:26:37-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-03-31T01:26:37-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

A sliver lining from the Covid-19 pandemic? I’ll take any good news at the moment. Here is the satellite imagery of Wuhan from NASA:

\n\n

\n\n

NASA stated on Saturday that it had seen \"significant decreases\" in noxious nitrogen dioxide over China through February. Nitrogen dioxide is emitted by burning fuel, cars, power plants, and construction machinery, and it can aggravate respiratory symptoms and asthma, among other negative effects.

China's cities rank among the most polluted in the world, with Hotan and Kashgar in the top 20 according to an IQAir report.

NASA published satellite imagery on Saturday, which you can see above, showing nitrogen dioxide levels in China before and after the country began imposing lockdowns on 23 January.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

A sliver lining from the Covid-19 pandemic? I’ll take any good news at the moment. Here is the satellite imagery of Wuhan from NASA:

\n\n

\n\n

NASA stated on Saturday that it had seen \"significant decreases\" in noxious nitrogen dioxide over China through February. Nitrogen dioxide is emitted by burning fuel, cars, power plants, and construction machinery, and it can aggravate respiratory symptoms and asthma, among other negative effects.

China's cities rank among the most polluted in the world, with Hotan and Kashgar in the top 20 according to an IQAir report.

NASA published satellite imagery on Saturday, which you can see above, showing nitrogen dioxide levels in China before and after the country began imposing lockdowns on 23 January.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/03/31/hthe-feds-response-to-covid-19/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/03/31/hthe-feds-response-to-covid-19/", "title": "The Fed's Response to COVID-19", "date_published": "2020-03-31T01:00:51-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-03-31T01:00:51-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Covid-19 is turning out to be one of those events in history that will have a repercussions far into the future. Maybe this will finally expose the gross inequalities in our society. Eric Levitz writes in the Intelligencer

\n\n

The coronavirus crisis is changing our world in many sorrowful respects. It has rendered our already atomized and aching society poorer, sicker, and lonelier than it was a few months ago. If this week’s bailout legislation plays out as some progressive analysts predict, the pandemic’s economic side effects will accelerate corporate concentration and income inequality.

\n\n

But this disaster also offers a vital opportunity for beneficent forms of change. By accentuating the perversity of our nation’s employment-based health insurance model — which is now causing millions of workers to lose coverage in the midst of a pandemic — the crisis creates an opening for progressives to remake the politics of health reform. By spotlighting the indispensable labor that grocery store clerks and delivery drivers contribute, it could help unionists illustrate the market’s unjust undervaluation of such “low-skill” work. And by politicizing just about every aspect of our economy — which is to say, by forcing Congress to demonstrate the private sector’s dependence on the state, and to allocate scarce subsidies and credit between corporations, small businesses, and individuals — the crisis gives us a fighting chance to secure a more democratic and egalitarian form of economic governance.

\n\n

Unless, ya know, we just throw up our hands, curse those clowns in Congress, and wait for Jerome Powell & Co. to restore some facsimile of the world we just lost.

\n", "content_html": "

Covid-19 is turning out to be one of those events in history that will have a repercussions far into the future. Maybe this will finally expose the gross inequalities in our society. Eric Levitz writes in the Intelligencer

\n\n

The coronavirus crisis is changing our world in many sorrowful respects. It has rendered our already atomized and aching society poorer, sicker, and lonelier than it was a few months ago. If this week’s bailout legislation plays out as some progressive analysts predict, the pandemic’s economic side effects will accelerate corporate concentration and income inequality.

\n\n

But this disaster also offers a vital opportunity for beneficent forms of change. By accentuating the perversity of our nation’s employment-based health insurance model — which is now causing millions of workers to lose coverage in the midst of a pandemic — the crisis creates an opening for progressives to remake the politics of health reform. By spotlighting the indispensable labor that grocery store clerks and delivery drivers contribute, it could help unionists illustrate the market’s unjust undervaluation of such “low-skill” work. And by politicizing just about every aspect of our economy — which is to say, by forcing Congress to demonstrate the private sector’s dependence on the state, and to allocate scarce subsidies and credit between corporations, small businesses, and individuals — the crisis gives us a fighting chance to secure a more democratic and egalitarian form of economic governance.

\n\n

Unless, ya know, we just throw up our hands, curse those clowns in Congress, and wait for Jerome Powell & Co. to restore some facsimile of the world we just lost.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/03/29/the-british-on-us-healthcare-costs/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/03/29/the-british-on-us-healthcare-costs/", "title": "The British on US Healthcare Costs", "date_published": "2020-03-29T04:44:56-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-03-29T04:44:56-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

With the US becoming ground zero for the Corona virus epidemic, our health care systems' flaws are being brutally exposed. Here is PoliticsJOE asking the British, who have the NHA, what they think it costs in the us to have basic health care services.

\n\n

Their comment on our ridiculous system is:

\n\n

Is there a price for that?

\n\n

and

\n\n

So if you are poor you are dead

\n\n

Exactly.

\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

With the US becoming ground zero for the Corona virus epidemic, our health care systems' flaws are being brutally exposed. Here is PoliticsJOE asking the British, who have the NHA, what they think it costs in the us to have basic health care services.

\n\n

Their comment on our ridiculous system is:

\n\n

Is there a price for that?

\n\n

and

\n\n

So if you are poor you are dead

\n\n

Exactly.

\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/03/28/california-once-had-a-plan/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/03/28/california-once-had-a-plan/", "title": "California once had a plan", "date_published": "2020-03-28T22:58:50-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-03-28T22:58:50-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

As reported in the Los Angeles Times:

\n\n

They were ready to roll whenever disaster struck California: three 200-bed mobile hospitals that could be deployed to the scene of a crisis on flatbed trucks and provide advanced medical care to the injured and sick within 72 hours.

Each hospital would be the size of a football field, with a surgery ward, intensive care unit and X-ray equipment. Medical response teams would also have access to a massive stockpile of emergency supplies: 50 million N95 respirators, 2,400 portable ventilators and kits to set up 21,000 additional patient beds wherever they were needed.

\n\n\n

So what happened to it all? As usual, the government got rid of it all in order to save money. At one point, the California government even considered selling the equipment on eBay. The infuriating part is all of this cost no more than $5.8 million per year - today, California will pay a lot more then that to help Corona virus patients:

\n\n

In televised remarks Monday, Newsom said the state will lease beds in struggling hospitals around the state and is eyeing convention centers, motels and state university dormitories for use as hospital wards. One such lease, in Daly City, may cost the state as much as $3.2 million a month for 177 beds.

\n\n

You read that right – $3.2 million a month for just 177 beds !!!. When this is all over, we need to reassess how we prepare for future emergencies. Because in an ever connected world, the risk of outbreaks like the Covid-19 virus are higher than ever before.

\n", "content_html": "

As reported in the Los Angeles Times:

\n\n

They were ready to roll whenever disaster struck California: three 200-bed mobile hospitals that could be deployed to the scene of a crisis on flatbed trucks and provide advanced medical care to the injured and sick within 72 hours.

Each hospital would be the size of a football field, with a surgery ward, intensive care unit and X-ray equipment. Medical response teams would also have access to a massive stockpile of emergency supplies: 50 million N95 respirators, 2,400 portable ventilators and kits to set up 21,000 additional patient beds wherever they were needed.

\n\n\n

So what happened to it all? As usual, the government got rid of it all in order to save money. At one point, the California government even considered selling the equipment on eBay. The infuriating part is all of this cost no more than $5.8 million per year - today, California will pay a lot more then that to help Corona virus patients:

\n\n

In televised remarks Monday, Newsom said the state will lease beds in struggling hospitals around the state and is eyeing convention centers, motels and state university dormitories for use as hospital wards. One such lease, in Daly City, may cost the state as much as $3.2 million a month for 177 beds.

\n\n

You read that right – $3.2 million a month for just 177 beds !!!. When this is all over, we need to reassess how we prepare for future emergencies. Because in an ever connected world, the risk of outbreaks like the Covid-19 virus are higher than ever before.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/03/28/trumps-evolution-on-covid-19/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/03/28/trumps-evolution-on-covid-19/", "title": "Trumps evolution on COVID-19", "date_published": "2020-03-28T03:01:20-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-03-28T03:01:20-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Trumps handling of Coronavirus pandemic. This is what happens when you put the most self centered man in the most powerful office in the world.\n

\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Trumps handling of Coronavirus pandemic. This is what happens when you put the most self centered man in the most powerful office in the world.\n

\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/03/28/us-is-now-the-epicenter/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/03/28/us-is-now-the-epicenter/", "title": "US is now the Epicenter", "date_published": "2020-03-28T02:51:33-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-03-28T02:51:33-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

From the New York Times:

\n\n

There are now at least 82,174 cases of the new coronavirus disease, COVID-19, in the United States, according to worldometer, a website that tracks coronavirus cases. That’s higher than the case count in either Italy (which has 80,589 cases) or China (which has 81,285 cases).

\n\n

And it is a sprawling, cacophonous democracy, where states set their own policies and President Trump has sent mixed messages about the scale of the danger and how to fight it, ensuring there was no coherent, unified response to a grave public health threat.

\n", "content_html": "

From the New York Times:

\n\n

There are now at least 82,174 cases of the new coronavirus disease, COVID-19, in the United States, according to worldometer, a website that tracks coronavirus cases. That’s higher than the case count in either Italy (which has 80,589 cases) or China (which has 81,285 cases).

\n\n

And it is a sprawling, cacophonous democracy, where states set their own policies and President Trump has sent mixed messages about the scale of the danger and how to fight it, ensuring there was no coherent, unified response to a grave public health threat.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/03/28/psafe-grocery-shopping-in-pandemic/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/03/28/psafe-grocery-shopping-in-pandemic/", "title": "Safe Grocery Shopping in a Pandemic", "date_published": "2020-03-28T02:20:55-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-03-28T02:20:55-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Dr. Jeffrey VanWingen MD has made a excellent video on how to take the proper precautions when dealing with groceries and take out food. If a lot of this seems like overkill - it isn’t. This is known as the paradox of preparation.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\nHopefully we all look back on these videos and chuckle at our over reactions.

\n", "content_html": "

Dr. Jeffrey VanWingen MD has made a excellent video on how to take the proper precautions when dealing with groceries and take out food. If a lot of this seems like overkill - it isn’t. This is known as the paradox of preparation.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\nHopefully we all look back on these videos and chuckle at our over reactions.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/03/23/coronavirus-test-results-within-45-minutes/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/03/23/coronavirus-test-results-within-45-minutes/", "title": "Coronavirus test results within 45 minutes", "date_published": "2020-03-23T01:36:30-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-03-23T01:36:30-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Kanishka Singh at Reuters is reporting that a test for the Coronavirus with a test which can give results in 45 minutes:

\n\n

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved the first rapid coronavirus diagnostic test, with a detection time of about 45 minutes, as the United States struggles to meet the demand for coronavirus testing.

The test’s developer, California-based molecular diagnostics company Cepheid, said on Saturday it had received an emergency use authorization from the FDA for the test, which will be used primarily in hospitals and emergency rooms. The company plans to begin shipping it to hospitals next week, it said.

The FDA confirmed its approval in a separate statement. It said the company intends to roll out the availability of its testing by March 30.

\n\n\n

This is great new and will surely become a key turning point in our fight against Coronavirus.

\n", "content_html": "

Kanishka Singh at Reuters is reporting that a test for the Coronavirus with a test which can give results in 45 minutes:

\n\n

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved the first rapid coronavirus diagnostic test, with a detection time of about 45 minutes, as the United States struggles to meet the demand for coronavirus testing.

The test’s developer, California-based molecular diagnostics company Cepheid, said on Saturday it had received an emergency use authorization from the FDA for the test, which will be used primarily in hospitals and emergency rooms. The company plans to begin shipping it to hospitals next week, it said.

The FDA confirmed its approval in a separate statement. It said the company intends to roll out the availability of its testing by March 30.

\n\n\n

This is great new and will surely become a key turning point in our fight against Coronavirus.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/03/22/the-hammer-and-the-dance/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/03/22/the-hammer-and-the-dance/", "title": "The Hammer and the Dance", "date_published": "2020-03-22T00:08:53-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-03-22T00:08:53-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Tomas Pueyo has published Coronavirus: The Hammer and the Dance. A highly recommended read.

\n\n

\n\n

First comes the Hammer — we use aggressive measures for weeks, giving our healthcare system time to ramp up & scientists time to research the hell out of this thing and for the world’s testing capability to get up to speed.

\n\n

Strong coronavirus measures today should only last a few weeks, there shouldn’t be a big peak of infections afterwards, and it can all be done for a reasonable cost to society, saving millions of lives along the way. If we don’t take these measures, tens of millions will be infected, many will die, along with anybody else that requires intensive care, because the healthcare system will have collapsed.

\n\n\n

And then we Dance.

\n\n

If you hammer the coronavirus, within a few weeks you’ve controlled it and you’re in much better shape to address it. Now comes the longer-term effort to keep this virus contained until there’s a vaccine.

This is probably the single biggest, most important mistake people make when thinking about this stage: they think it will keep them home for months. This is not the case at all. In fact, it is likely that our lives will go back to close to normal.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Tomas Pueyo has published Coronavirus: The Hammer and the Dance. A highly recommended read.

\n\n

\n\n

First comes the Hammer — we use aggressive measures for weeks, giving our healthcare system time to ramp up & scientists time to research the hell out of this thing and for the world’s testing capability to get up to speed.

\n\n

Strong coronavirus measures today should only last a few weeks, there shouldn’t be a big peak of infections afterwards, and it can all be done for a reasonable cost to society, saving millions of lives along the way. If we don’t take these measures, tens of millions will be infected, many will die, along with anybody else that requires intensive care, because the healthcare system will have collapsed.

\n\n\n

And then we Dance.

\n\n

If you hammer the coronavirus, within a few weeks you’ve controlled it and you’re in much better shape to address it. Now comes the longer-term effort to keep this virus contained until there’s a vaccine.

This is probably the single biggest, most important mistake people make when thinking about this stage: they think it will keep them home for months. This is not the case at all. In fact, it is likely that our lives will go back to close to normal.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/03/20/socialism-of-the-rich-capitalism-for-the-rest/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/03/20/socialism-of-the-rich-capitalism-for-the-rest/", "title": "Socialism for the Rich, Capitalism for the Rest", "date_published": "2020-03-20T14:01:39-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-03-20T14:01:39-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Robert Reich is a former U.S. secretary of Labor and the author of many books, most recently Common Good. Here he is talking about socialism.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\n

\n\n

If you want to call it socialism - fine. I call it fair.

\n\n\n


\n", "content_html": "

Robert Reich is a former U.S. secretary of Labor and the author of many books, most recently Common Good. Here he is talking about socialism.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\n

\n\n

If you want to call it socialism - fine. I call it fair.

\n\n\n


\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/03/17/airlines-are-asking-for-50-dollars-billion/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/03/17/airlines-are-asking-for-50-dollars-billion/", "title": "Airlines are asking for $50 Billion", "date_published": "2020-03-17T22:12:12-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-03-17T22:12:12-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

The Airlines for America on Monday claimed that all seven major U.S. passenger carriers would run out of money between July and December. Therefore they are asking $50 billion in assistance from the federal government. And the way they are asking for it is to divide it evenly between grants and low-interest loans.

\n\n

But why do they even need this money? Airlines are coming off a historic 10 year boom. And the mergers have given Delta, United, American, and Southwest about 80 percent of the U.S. market. Delta’s profits for each of the past five years, back from 2019 to 2015, were $4.8 billion, $3.9 billion, $3.2 billion, $4.2 billion, and $4.5 billion. Thats $21.6 billion. And this when the oil prices are low with the economy was booming.

\n\n

So where did all that money go? They spent all of that profit on themselves and their executives. According to Bloomberg the airlines spent 96 percent on cash buybacks and executive compensation.

\n\n

Sure the Covid-19 threw everyone into a downward spiral. But it wasn’t as if this was not completely out of the blue. American Airlines actually reported in their December 31, 2018 Annual Report Form 10-K the following:

\n\n

In particular, an outbreak of a contagious disease such as the Ebola virus, Middle East Respiratory Syndrome, Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome, H1N1 influenza virus, avian flu, Zika virus or any other similar illness, if it were to become associated with air travel or persist for an extended period, could materially affect the airline industry and us by reducing revenues and adversely impacting our operations and passengers' travel behavior.

\n\n

So instead of saving their pennies for such an event, the airline companies spent all of that cash to enrich themselves.

\n\n

If any American family operated like that, we would say its financial mismanagement. When the American people ask for government assistance - we get told that we should have managed our money better.

\n\n

But yea we get it. We need robust air infrastructure to grow and support our economy. But you have some gaul asking for free money (also known as grants) and a low interest loans. Needless to say, the airlines should not get to dictate terms.

\n\n

This is how this bailout should be structured:

\n\n\n\n\n

And the government should seriously consider breaking up the big four - but that is a post for another time.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

The Airlines for America on Monday claimed that all seven major U.S. passenger carriers would run out of money between July and December. Therefore they are asking $50 billion in assistance from the federal government. And the way they are asking for it is to divide it evenly between grants and low-interest loans.

\n\n

But why do they even need this money? Airlines are coming off a historic 10 year boom. And the mergers have given Delta, United, American, and Southwest about 80 percent of the U.S. market. Delta’s profits for each of the past five years, back from 2019 to 2015, were $4.8 billion, $3.9 billion, $3.2 billion, $4.2 billion, and $4.5 billion. Thats $21.6 billion. And this when the oil prices are low with the economy was booming.

\n\n

So where did all that money go? They spent all of that profit on themselves and their executives. According to Bloomberg the airlines spent 96 percent on cash buybacks and executive compensation.

\n\n

Sure the Covid-19 threw everyone into a downward spiral. But it wasn’t as if this was not completely out of the blue. American Airlines actually reported in their December 31, 2018 Annual Report Form 10-K the following:

\n\n

In particular, an outbreak of a contagious disease such as the Ebola virus, Middle East Respiratory Syndrome, Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome, H1N1 influenza virus, avian flu, Zika virus or any other similar illness, if it were to become associated with air travel or persist for an extended period, could materially affect the airline industry and us by reducing revenues and adversely impacting our operations and passengers' travel behavior.

\n\n

So instead of saving their pennies for such an event, the airline companies spent all of that cash to enrich themselves.

\n\n

If any American family operated like that, we would say its financial mismanagement. When the American people ask for government assistance - we get told that we should have managed our money better.

\n\n

But yea we get it. We need robust air infrastructure to grow and support our economy. But you have some gaul asking for free money (also known as grants) and a low interest loans. Needless to say, the airlines should not get to dictate terms.

\n\n

This is how this bailout should be structured:

\n\n\n\n\n

And the government should seriously consider breaking up the big four - but that is a post for another time.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/03/12/why-does-soap-work-so-well-with-viruses/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/03/12/why-does-soap-work-so-well-with-viruses/", "title": "Why is soap the best against Coronavirus (COVID-19)?", "date_published": "2020-03-12T11:12:04-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-03-12T11:12:04-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

While there has been a mad rush by people all over the country to buy hand sanitizers of all types, good old hand soap is known to work best against viruses such as the Coronavirus (COVID-19).

\n\n

Here is an excellent thread on why:

\n\n
\n

1/25 Part 1 - Why does soap work so well on the SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus and indeed most viruses? Because it is a self-assembled nanoparticle in which the weakest link is the lipid (fatty) bilayer. A two part thread about soap, viruses and supramolecular chemistry #COVID19 pic.twitter.com/OCwqPjO5Ht

— Palli Thordarson (@PalliThordarson) March 8, 2020
\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

While there has been a mad rush by people all over the country to buy hand sanitizers of all types, good old hand soap is known to work best against viruses such as the Coronavirus (COVID-19).

\n\n

Here is an excellent thread on why:

\n\n
\n

1/25 Part 1 - Why does soap work so well on the SARS-CoV-2, the coronavirus and indeed most viruses? Because it is a self-assembled nanoparticle in which the weakest link is the lipid (fatty) bilayer. A two part thread about soap, viruses and supramolecular chemistry #COVID19 pic.twitter.com/OCwqPjO5Ht

— Palli Thordarson (@PalliThordarson) March 8, 2020
\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/03/11/coronavirus-covid-19-facts-not-fiction/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/03/11/coronavirus-covid-19-facts-not-fiction/", "title": "Coronavirus (COVID-19) - Facts not Fiction", "date_published": "2020-03-11T11:49:43-04:00", "date_modified": "2020-03-11T11:49:43-04:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Before the media sensationalizes this and the politicians amp this up even higher, lets stop for a minute and look at the facts so far. I am not saying we do not take immediate action to prevent further spread, but folks, its not the end of the wold.\n
\n\n
\n

\n", "content_html": "

Before the media sensationalizes this and the politicians amp this up even higher, lets stop for a minute and look at the facts so far. I am not saying we do not take immediate action to prevent further spread, but folks, its not the end of the wold.\n
\n\n
\n

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/02/19/on-tyranny/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/02/19/on-tyranny/", "title": "On Tyranny", "date_published": "2020-02-19T01:07:20-05:00", "date_modified": "2020-02-19T01:07:20-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

In his book On Tyranny: Twenty Lessons from the Twentieth Century, Timothy Snyder looks at lessons from the collapse of various democracies across Europe over the course of the 20th century. A short read on the lessons to be learned and the what we can to protect our democracy.

\n\n

\"\"
The European history of the twentieth century shows us that societies can break, democracies can fall, ethics can collapse and ordinary men can find themselves standing over death pits with guns in their hands. We might be tempted to think that our democratic heritage automatically protects us from such threats. This is a misguided reflex. Americans today are no wiser than the Europeans who saw democracy yield to fascism, Nazism, or Communism in the twentieth century. Our one advantage is that we might learn from their experience. Now is a good time to do so.

\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

In his book On Tyranny: Twenty Lessons from the Twentieth Century, Timothy Snyder looks at lessons from the collapse of various democracies across Europe over the course of the 20th century. A short read on the lessons to be learned and the what we can to protect our democracy.

\n\n

\"\"
The European history of the twentieth century shows us that societies can break, democracies can fall, ethics can collapse and ordinary men can find themselves standing over death pits with guns in their hands. We might be tempted to think that our democratic heritage automatically protects us from such threats. This is a misguided reflex. Americans today are no wiser than the Europeans who saw democracy yield to fascism, Nazism, or Communism in the twentieth century. Our one advantage is that we might learn from their experience. Now is a good time to do so.

\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/02/19/bernie-sanders-takes-double-digit-lead/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/02/19/bernie-sanders-takes-double-digit-lead/", "title": "Bernie Sanders takes Double digit lead", "date_published": "2020-02-19T01:00:33-05:00", "date_modified": "2020-02-19T01:00:33-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

New poll has Sanders support at 31% nationally, up 9 points since December, the last time the poll asked about Democratic voters' preferences. Next closest contender has 19%.

\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

New poll has Sanders support at 31% nationally, up 9 points since December, the last time the poll asked about Democratic voters' preferences. Next closest contender has 19%.

\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/02/19/the-rule-of-law-failing-under-trump/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/02/19/the-rule-of-law-failing-under-trump/", "title": "The Rule Of Law Failing Under Trump", "date_published": "2020-02-19T00:49:01-05:00", "date_modified": "2020-02-19T00:49:01-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Rachel Maddow on the resignation of the four prosecutors in the Roger Stone sentencing case.

\n\n

There's no line that this President will not cross. Tell me if you can imagine one. Tell me the thing that would be bad for America but good for him - he wouldn't do it because it'd be bad for the country. What's beyond the pale for him?

\n\n\n\n\n
\n\n\n\n", "content_html": "

Rachel Maddow on the resignation of the four prosecutors in the Roger Stone sentencing case.

\n\n

There's no line that this President will not cross. Tell me if you can imagine one. Tell me the thing that would be bad for America but good for him - he wouldn't do it because it'd be bad for the country. What's beyond the pale for him?

\n\n\n\n\n
\n\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/02/13/time-is-now/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/02/13/time-is-now/", "title": "Time is now!", "date_published": "2020-02-13T00:05:09-05:00", "date_modified": "2020-02-13T00:05:09-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

Michael Render (aka Killer Mike) gave a rousing speech in support of Senator Bernie Sanders. This is the most powerful ad I have seen this election season. The Sanders champaign should blanket the airwaves with this.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\n\n

Look to your neighbor and say:
Neighbor, the time is now.
There are more of us.
We're stronger.
We will wait no longer.
The time is now.
When you go to the that booth next year,
I need you to carry in that booth the memory of this room
Black.
White.
Straight.
Gay.
Men.
Female.
We are together.
We are united.
Our time is right now.
We will not wait four more years.
We will not wait 20 more years.
We will not wait two more Presidents.
We will not wait three more Presidents.
The time is now.
The time is not in the future.
The time is not some abstract time.
The time is not something that might be.
The time ain't something that could be.
The time ain't nothing that should be.
That would be.
It ain't tomorrow.
It ain't the day after.
It ain't coming next week.
The time is
Now!
The time is
Now!
The time is
Now!
The time is
Now!

\n\n\n

Revolution indeed. The time is now!

\n", "content_html": "

Michael Render (aka Killer Mike) gave a rousing speech in support of Senator Bernie Sanders. This is the most powerful ad I have seen this election season. The Sanders champaign should blanket the airwaves with this.

\n\n
\n\n\n


\n\n

Look to your neighbor and say:
Neighbor, the time is now.
There are more of us.
We're stronger.
We will wait no longer.
The time is now.
When you go to the that booth next year,
I need you to carry in that booth the memory of this room
Black.
White.
Straight.
Gay.
Men.
Female.
We are together.
We are united.
Our time is right now.
We will not wait four more years.
We will not wait 20 more years.
We will not wait two more Presidents.
We will not wait three more Presidents.
The time is now.
The time is not in the future.
The time is not some abstract time.
The time is not something that might be.
The time ain't something that could be.
The time ain't nothing that should be.
That would be.
It ain't tomorrow.
It ain't the day after.
It ain't coming next week.
The time is
Now!
The time is
Now!
The time is
Now!
The time is
Now!

\n\n\n

Revolution indeed. The time is now!

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/02/10/nasa-moonshot-2024/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/02/10/nasa-moonshot-2024/", "title": "NASA moonshot 2024", "date_published": "2020-02-10T01:54:56-05:00", "date_modified": "2020-02-10T01:54:56-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

\n\n

No one has been to the moon since 1972, even though, back in 2004, then-President George W. Bush laid out several goals for NASA, including a \"return to the moon by 2020 as the launching point for missions beyond.\"

\n\n\n

Moonshot in 2024? Thas 4 years from now! No chance.

\n\n

This isn’t the 1950s. We don’t just throw people atop rockets anymore. These are vehicles, aircraft. There is absolutely no way any of the current crop of space vehicles could be made ready for a trip to the moon anytime before 2024.

\n\n

Going beyond low orbit, away from the sub-45min return time, is something we haven’t done in generations. The craft need to be tested, repeatedly. Each test flight then has to be analyzed before the next test flight. The turnaround for a single test will be many months, even a year. Getting all the bits and pieces together would then take many more years of integration work.

\n\n

Look at the F-35. Look at the 737-max. These are complicated systems with layers of dependencies. Our society today simply does not accept the cowboy approach to safety that was the original moon race. The next moon landing will only happen after a decade-long deliberative, iterative, campaign requiring the support of many subsequent governments.

\n\n

It is good to have a goal. But lets not get ahead of ourselves.

\n", "content_html": "

\n\n

No one has been to the moon since 1972, even though, back in 2004, then-President George W. Bush laid out several goals for NASA, including a \"return to the moon by 2020 as the launching point for missions beyond.\"

\n\n\n

Moonshot in 2024? Thas 4 years from now! No chance.

\n\n

This isn’t the 1950s. We don’t just throw people atop rockets anymore. These are vehicles, aircraft. There is absolutely no way any of the current crop of space vehicles could be made ready for a trip to the moon anytime before 2024.

\n\n

Going beyond low orbit, away from the sub-45min return time, is something we haven’t done in generations. The craft need to be tested, repeatedly. Each test flight then has to be analyzed before the next test flight. The turnaround for a single test will be many months, even a year. Getting all the bits and pieces together would then take many more years of integration work.

\n\n

Look at the F-35. Look at the 737-max. These are complicated systems with layers of dependencies. Our society today simply does not accept the cowboy approach to safety that was the original moon race. The next moon landing will only happen after a decade-long deliberative, iterative, campaign requiring the support of many subsequent governments.

\n\n

It is good to have a goal. But lets not get ahead of ourselves.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/02/03/anders-hejlsberg-on-compiler-construction/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/02/03/anders-hejlsberg-on-compiler-construction/", "title": "Anders Hejlsberg on Compiler Construction", "date_published": "2020-02-03T21:15:33-05:00", "date_modified": "2020-02-03T21:15:33-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "
\n\n\n


\nAnders Hejlsberg gives a talk on compiler construction. For those who don’t know, Hejlsberg is the one who gave us Turbo Pascal, Delphi, C# and most recently TypeScript. An excellent intro to modern compiler construction by one of the true masters of the field.

\n", "content_html": "
\n\n\n


\nAnders Hejlsberg gives a talk on compiler construction. For those who don’t know, Hejlsberg is the one who gave us Turbo Pascal, Delphi, C# and most recently TypeScript. An excellent intro to modern compiler construction by one of the true masters of the field.

\n", "tags": [], "image": "" }, { "id": "/blog/2020/02/02/logitech-g-pro-keyboard/", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com/blog/2020/02/02/logitech-g-pro-keyboard/", "title": "Logitech G Pro Keyboard Review", "date_published": "2020-02-02T12:46:11-05:00", "date_modified": "2020-02-02T12:46:11-05:00", "author": { "name": "the Insightful Troll", "url": "http://insightfultroll.com" }, "summary": "

A mechanical keyboard is a keyboard built with high quality, typically spring activated, key switches. These key switches vary based on the keyboard’s application or user preference.

\n\n\n\n\n

While some of the first widely sold keyboards such as IBM’s Model M in the 1980’s utilized mechanical switches, the 1990’s brought on a wave of inexpensive rubber dome keyboards that flooded the keyboard market. Rubber dome keyboards represent over 90% of keyboards in use today and provide an inexpensive but dissatisfying feel and typing experience.

\n\n

Mechanical keyboards raise the bar in every way. A mechanical keyboard’s switches, framing, functionality, type print methods, key construction, PCB board, LED lighting (sharpness, brightness, adjustability), and a slew of other features are far superior compared to traditional rubber dome keyboards. Most of these improvements boil down to one thing - feel. Mechanical keyboards simply feel better than rubber dome keyboards.

\n\n

Over the last few years, mechanical keyboards have become extremely popular. And as a developer I prefer the force feed back and the reassuring click and tactile feed back that they provide. However there is a huge variety of keyboards available with different layouts, key types and price points. How do you pick one that is right for you?

\n\n

After trying many of mechanical keyboards, I can honestly recommend the Logitech G Pro Gaming keyboard. Don’t let the gaming part fool you. This is a serious keyboard that gives one of the best performances at a very reasonable price.

\n\n

\n\n

What is in the box

\n\n

The Logitech G Pro Gaming keyboard comes with a just the essentials - the keyboard itself, a braided micro-USB cable and a small leaflet that tells you how to plug in the keyboard. Thats about it. You’ll either want to hold on to the box or invest in a separate case as one is not included.

\n\n

The G Pro’s braided micro-USB cable deserves mention. With hooks on either side, it provides for a secure fit. This is good for securing the cable so you don’t accidentally remove it while in use. And the braided cable looks to be strong - no fraying or cutting problems here.

\n\n

\n\n

Design

\n\n

The G Pro looks like what would happen if we were to take a standard full mechanical keyboard and simply chop off the numpad with some kind of high-tech paper cutter. It has a full selection of keys (minus the numpad), in addition to a key that controls the lighting and one that activates a Game Mode. The Game Mode is useless for programmers. It prevents you from clicking keys such as Alt-Tab or the Windows button, so that you won’t accidentally shut down your game midway. I wish this key was programmable to something else - but alas, you can’t.

\n\n

\n\n

That’s most of what there is to say about the keyboard’s looks. It’s small (14.2 x 6.0 x 1.4 inches), attractive and streamlined. Instead of employing discrete media controls, you can use the Fn key and the top row of Function buttons. Discrete controls would have been nice, but the advantage here is that they don’t clutter the keyboard.

\n\n

Keys

\n\n

The keyboard makes use of the company’s ubiquitous Romer-G mechanical switches. If you’ve never tried them before, they feel like Cherry MX Browns: tactile and fairly quiet. While Cherries are the standard to beat, Romer-Gs are supposed to be a hair faster, more responsive and more durable, so you could do much worse. Taken on their own merits, they’re pretty comfortable.

\n\n

\n\n

The Romer-G switches are great for typing. With the G Pro, I typed 115 words per minute with nine errors. Thats pretty good - at least for me.

\n\n

Features

\n\n

The Logitech G Pro runs on the Logitech Gaming Software, which is excellent. You can program the F1 through F12 keys, as well as adjust the backlighting and keep track of your stats (where your fingers spend the most time, how often you press buttons, and so forth).

\n\n

\n \n \n \n \n
\n
\n\n\n

There’s one onboard profile for the G Pro keyboard. This profile stores one lighting profile, which means that you can hook up the keyboard to any computer and have it retain any key colors that you care to program.

\n\n

I’m not sure if this constitutes a bona fide “Big Deal,” but it’s a helpful feature, particularly because the keyboard’s default color wave can be somewhat distracting, and turning off lighting entirely makes the peripheral feel a little plain. My only complaint is that it took me a little while to figure out how to save the onboard profile. Hardly a deal breaker.

\n\n

Performance

\n\n

I put the G Pro through its paces, with both e-sports and narrative-driven titles, and it worked well in both cases. I had no trouble gliding around the battlefiel