Saturday Link Encyclopedia

Job wars.

You can request hand-crafted reading lists from a Brooklyn library online.

A great article on the demise of Sears.

The best conspiracy theory this week.

Transnistria. The article is light on insight but there’s a ton of photos.

The silent (and scared) majority.

The casualties of mainstream reporting practices.

Freedom of speech is not a human right in the EU. And that’s how the creators of the Enlightenment let it die.

People who foist screens on us realize they are dangerous.

7 thoughts on “Saturday Link Encyclopedia”

  1. \ He has five children and 12 tech rules. They include: no phones until the summer before high school, no screens in bedrooms, network-level content blocking, no social media until age 13, no iPads at all and screen time schedules enforced by Google Wifi that he controls from his phone. Bad behavior? The child goes offline for 24 hours.

    Remember you and Mike sharing how kids easily fool their parents who try to restrict them from doing certain things online, break through (fire?) walls and destroy communication in the process, probably forever?

    Enforcing Wifi sounds like creating unnecessary adversarial relationship with one’s kids.

    I had a computer only as a high school student and did immediately get hooked. Had I had Internet since childhood, I would not have read as many books. (But I hope I still would’ve read some. It’s not like everybody was a great reader before Internet anyway.)

    However, my brother who had a computer since elementary school age turned out OK.


    1. Yes, he’s an idiot. These rules are asinine. He’s trying to get Google WiFi to parent for him, and it’s not how this works.

      I believe that the only real way to keep kids away from screens is to offer a more fun alternative of spending time together without screens. That’s hard, that’s time-consuming, that’s often a lot more boring than posting crap on Twitter or playing Candy Crush. But that’s the only way.

      We had computers long before anybody I knew because of my father’s job. We had all sorts of addictive games on them. But I can’t remember ever choosing them when there was an alternative of going someplace with my dad because it was more fun.


  2. // Or the fear of immigrant caravans. Again, I don’t even remotely share it.

    I read this post of Mike and do not understand why being afraid is unwise:

    I think Lionel Shriver is correct when she writes:

    // Europe lies next door to a continent whose population will double to 2.5 billion by 2050, rising to an eye-popping 4.5 billion by 2100. This is the continent likely to suffer the most from climate change, already afflicted with desertification, and always prone to drought. It’s poor and corrupt.

    For the US, that surge of Hondurans is a wavelet in an incoming tide; for Europe, 2015 was mere prelude.

    Thomas Friedman has astutely characterised the West vs the rest as order vs disorder. But with over-stressed welfare systems, accelerating cultural upheaval and rising right-wing militancy, the lands of order can slide to chaos themselves. If in the next few decades we’re looking at migration on the scale I think we are, we may be required to develop a hard heart, or simply surrender to forces larger than we can control. I’m not sure which is worse.


    1. I love Hondurans and I know how to adapt to their cultural differences. But it would be unfair to condemn people who don’t feel at ease like I do because they didn’t get an extensive training in Latin American culture at an Ivy League school. If I did that, it would be the worst kind of privileged condescension.


  3. Loved the description:

    Millennials aren’t taking offence. They’re hunting for victims
    The noble defence of an infinitely multiplying list of ‘marginalised groups’ is a predatory movement

    Prowling the cultural veldt for givers of ‘offence’ is a blood sport, and its pleasures are those of hunting: spotting your prey, stalking, going in for the kill. Any source of umbrage thus presents an exulting opportunity to score a trophy, stuff it, and hang it on your (Facebook) wall. Mainstream institutions straining to be with-it give credence to this pretence of injury and vulnerability, when no one’s feelings actually have been hurt. So the victory is two-pronged. You take down the sinner, and you humiliate the editors of the Nation by forcing them to participate in an emotional theatre that every-one knows is fake.

    I don’t buy into the notion that the ‘snowflake’ generation is all that sensitive, either. Antifa protestors in balaclavas can be quite violent for little specks that melt. ‘Snowflakes’ may have induced institutions to employ the language of fragility, but I think a lot of these kids are tough as old boots.


    1. It’s important not to generalize. This is only about well-off, spoiled brat millennials. My students are millennials but they live on a different planet from all this. Unfortunately, a loud minority hogs the spotlight and millions of normal hardworking kids get conflated with these idiots.


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