Republicans threw professional expertise out of government. Evidence-based legislating seen as threat to campaign gains. washington monthly calls it ‘the big lobotomy’.

you are a computerized mask

“In ancient Rome, the word persona had two meanings: a mask, and a full citizen. A person online, however, is de facto not a full citizen….” Computers know your habits and your friends. You must govern automated decisions about your job, loans, your health, shopping… Civil Rights Principles for the Era of Big Data Technological … [Read more…]

too fast for myself

“Going too fast for myself I missed more than I think I can remember almost everything it seems sometimes and yet there are chances that come back that I did not notice when they stood where I could have reached out and touched them this morning the black shepherd dog still young looking up and … [Read more…]

we come, we go

Happy the man, whose wish and care A few paternal acres bound, Content to breathe his native air, In his own ground. Whose herds with milk, whose fields with bread, Whose flocks supply him with attire, Whose trees in summer yield him shade, In winter fire. Blest, who can unconcernedly find Hours, days, and years … [Read more…]

honesty, with breadth

There are plenty of schemes that could federate or safely encrypt our data, plenty of ways we could regain privacy and make our computers work better by default. It isn’t happening now because we haven’t demanded that it should, not because no one is clever enough to make that happen.

bewilderment for sale

“I sometimes think US politicians don’t know which way is up.” you’ve known this since you were a kid looming change is your blood struggling in a shit pile to fix it and now you’re tired call it reverence if you must it’s real exhaustion relief and more relief powerful youth could fix it wouldn’t it be nice … [Read more…]

sad, mad, or inspired?

Ladies & Gentlemen, what are we allowing History to do to us? Princeton study reports the majority, that’s you and me lost at sea, have a “minuscule, near-zero, statistically non-significant impact upon public policy.” Perspectives on Politics!  We are minuscule! minuscule near-zero statistically non-significant Lord Almighty, I am sad to my core.

don’t stand there and cry

…her flat just to the right of the lobby. Stoessinger arranged for a neighbor to accompany me. It was decided that I might make a better impression if I were introduced as a musician rather than a journalist, because Herz-Sommer can find journalists tiring. The tactic misfired somewhat. When I was introduced, she commanded, “Play … [Read more…]

of thee bits thyself coin

Yes, the precious human being so bombarded, it’s just the times and that’s all, awhile ago it was stooking wheat to nag you, now it’s penetrating broadcasters all over the place, well so what, it’s not so much of a big deal to get a grip, sourpuss isn’t based on much, anybody can be a … [Read more…]

extincting ourselves

reticent tissue, that is the issue, as time goes by, scratching vast mirrors, the knitwork network network to matrix and matrix to node, to coin a modern ode the synthesis of reliable organisms from unreliable components the relationship resource in the curiosity of breathing ol’ english chorus, the metal of anarchy in the monolith of … [Read more…]

you got you goin’ on

“We share our lives with the people we have failed to be.” Adam Phillips: Missing Out: In Praise of the Unlived Life There is always what will turn out to be the life we led, and the life that accompanied it, the parallel life that never actually happened, that we lived in our minds, the wished-for … [Read more…]

follow the bullies

“Robert Altemeyer, a psychology professor, outlined a series of dysfunctions linked to his extensive study of Right Wing Authoritarians, including being more punitive, more likely to make incorrect inferences, more hostile towards feminists, more fearful of a dangerous world; being hypocrites, more likely to inflame intergroup conflict, avoid learning about their personal feelings; being self-righteous, … [Read more…]