What You Can Get Away With » america

Worth Reading 123: Easy As

Who Stole the Four-Hour Workday? – How we lost our dreams of more leisure and less work.
America Is Not For Black People – “They — we — are inexplicably seen as a millions-strong army of potential killers, capable and cold enough that any single one could be a threat to a trained police officer in a bulletproof vest. There are reasons why white gun’s rights activists can walk into a Chipotle restaurant with assault rifles and be seen as gauche nuisances while unarmed black men are killed for reaching for their wallets or cell phones, or carrying children’s toys. Guns aren’t for black people, either.”
This is what dysphoria feels like – An explanation that was enlightening for me, so I share it in the hope it may enlighten others.
Why Does Society Seem To Be Falling Apart, Even Though It’s Not? – “Every advance in technology allows us to do more with less, extending our reach further while allowing us to expend less energy*. Which means that the power that a deeply unpleasant person has to inflict emotional damage has also scaled up massively, and continues to do so.”
The Story of Class Struggle, America’s Most Popular Marxist Board Game – Not that there was much competition for the title.

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The dark power of fraternities – It’s been doing the rounds because of an interesting opening, but the meat of this article on the influence of fraternities within the US higher education system is interesting.
The True History of Libertarianism in America: A Phony Ideology to Promote a Corporate Agenda – “That is how libertarianism in America started: As an arm of big business lobbying.”
America: Not a small business country – “There is almost no measure on which America’s small business sector stands out from those of other advanced countries.”
The audacious rescue plan that might have saved space shuttle Columbia – It’s unlikely that it would have worked, but an interesting look at the work that would have been needed to launch an emergency rescue once it was realised Columbia couldn’t return to Earth.
The Luton Peace Riots (1919) – ‘Can you have a riot for peace?’ asks Jim Jepps. Probably not, but this is a bit of British history I’d never heard before.

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Around the world in five links:

America: The Grim Truth – “I am not writing this to scare you. I write this to you as a friend. If you are able to read and understand what I’ve written here, then you are a member of a small minority in the United States. You are a minority in a country that has no place for you.” (via)
New Account of a Russian Cosmonaut’s Death Rife with Errors – As I linked to an account of the death of Vladimir Komarov a couple of weeks ago, here’s a counterpoint, arguing that many of the claims in the book that article is based on are erroneous (via)
Why I have joined the Liberal Democrats – Blogger and lawyer David Allen Green (aka Jack of Kent) explains why he’s joined the party. “There is only one political force which is having an actual liberal effect in our polity as it is presently constituted, and it is the Liberal Democrats.”
AV is the voting system for non-fanatics – Jason O’Mahony gives an Irish perspective on the referendum, including a lovely takedown of a pointless opinion piece in the Telegraph. “By her own words, it took Melissa an hour to count eight votes. I’ll say no more on the subject.” (via)
The Grand Tour – A New Yorker journalist joins a group of Chinese tourists on a trip round Europe. (via)

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Right, serious debate time. Which is funnier:

  • Conservapedia attempt to correct the notorious liberal bias present in the Bible, or;
  • This piece of art, which has to be seen to be believed (and check the detailed descriptions in the box to the right)
  • There’s only one to way find out….PRAYERFIGHT!

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