October 5, 2018 fkirschner

I get most of my weekly reading from Twitter nowadays. It used to be Facebook, but lately Facebook seems to have developed into some kind of elaborate calendar app reminding me what events my friends are interested in or attending. My friends appear to be bustling with activity.

The excellent @julian0liver shares an essay on how “hope” isn’t a useful sentiment for bringing about change, contrary to what the English-speaking world might want you to believe. (by Derrick Jensen in Orion Magazine)

At one of my recent talks someone stood up during the Q and A and announced that the only reason people ever become activists is to feel better about themselves. Effectiveness really doesn’t matter, he said, and it’s egotistical to think it does.
I told him I disagreed.

This ties in well with the recent New York Times feature on climate change from back in August. But also with how activists stopped the clearing of the Hambach Forest today.

Meanwhile in academia, three scientists spent a year writing hoax papers and trying to get them published in high profile cultural studies/social science journals (Helen Pluckrose, James A. Lindsay and Peter Boghossian in aeromagazine.com). This is Twitter discussing.

While in the real world, the first woman to win a Nobel Prize in Physics in 55 years had her Wikipedia page denied for submission (via the wonderful @apeanne).

…and Linux is “discussing” its code-of-conduct implementation.

Just in case anyone still has any doubt that video-games are an essential part of today’s political and/or social discourse, Michael Futter (at variety.com) connects Gamergate to the Kavanaugh hearings.

Following the revelations regarding his potential involvement in the allegations against Kavanaugh, Judge deleted his Twitter account. However, what remains via screenshots and tweets from others shows regular interaction with other prominent figures in the alt-right, including Chuck Johnson and actor Adam Baldwin, who helped coin the term Gamergate.


Best named Atossa Araxia Abrahamian writes about Modern Monetary Theory (in The Nation). Queue the blockchain use case in three…two…

The various strains of thought that make up MMT have their roots in Adam Smith and John Maynard Keynes, along with more contemporary thinkers like Hyman Minsky and Abba Lerner, but only recently have researchers connected the dots in quite this way. “We’ve rediscovered old ideas,” Kelton said, “and assembled them into a complete macroeconomic frame.”


These past two weeks, I have watched all of “Halt and Catch Fire”. All four seasons. You should watch it too, says the guardian. In fact it should be in the syllabus for all new media classes in performing arts programs everywhere.

The Whole Earth Catalogue, which I am sure is a part of many a new media syllabus, celebrates its 50 year anniversary next week.

Enjoy your weekend!