1. Democracy Tax

    November 18, 2016 by Gabe | [mmd] |

    I've taken a very specific stand against journalism paywalls in the past. It felt like an artificial barrier that restricted access to potentially vital information. It felt like a failure of foresight in an industry that refused to acknowledge the reality that they documented every day. I was wrong ...

  2. Missing the Mind of Kurt Vonnegut

    November 11, 2016 by Gabe | [mmd] |

    Kurt

    Kurt Vonnegut would be 94 today. His words and thought experiments shaped who I am. He made me a better person. I’m glad he kept his shit together for as long as he did.

    From Kurt’s “Cold Turkey” essay in 2004:

    “There is a tragic flaw in our ...

  3. Fly Air Gini [Link]

    March 08, 2016 by Gabe | [mmd] | ℳ↫

    Kieran Healy created a really interesting analogy to the wealth gap in the US:

    So, what if the space on the plane was allocated in proportion to the share of total income earned by each class? With a bit of help from the Census Bureau, Emmanuel Saez, and the Federal ...

  4. Apple and Political Spending [Link]

    February 25, 2016 by Gabe | [mmd] | ℳ↫

    Interesting breakdown of political spending by tech companies.

    To understand Apple’s efforts at persuading legislators of various issues, I compiled a measure of political footprint which combines a company’s own federally registered lobbying expenditures from 2015 with the campaign contributions they made during the 2013-14 election cycle from ...

  5. Why Education Does Not Fix Poverty [Link]

    December 03, 2015 by Gabe | [mmd] | ℳ↫

    An interesting study, the data of which, I have not verified.

    If the poverty rates for each educational bin remained the same, then the upward redistribution of adults from the lower bins to the higher bins would have led to lower overall poverty. But that's not what happened.

    Later ...

  6. Inside the Plot to Kill J.F.K. [Link]

    November 23, 2015 by Gabe | [mmd] | ℳ↫

    From David Talbot at Salon:

    To Morales, Kennedy was “that no good son of a bitch motherfucker” who was responsible for the deaths of the men he had trained for the Bay of Pigs mission. “We took care of that son of a bitch, didn’t we?” Morales told his ...

  7. True Terror

    November 11, 2015 by Gabe | [mmd] |

    True terror is to wake up one morning and discover that your high school class is running the country.

    — Kurt Vonnegut1

    Happy birthday to one of the best people our species has ever managed to squirt out. Go read Slaughterhouse Five or Cat's Cradle or Bluebeard or just ...

  8. Chipping Away at the Idiocy of the DMCA

    October 29, 2015 by Gabe | [mmd] |

    Huge thanks to the Library of Congress and the U.S. Copyright Office for helping out with the train wreck that is the DMCA. This week we get exemptions for to allow us to monitor and analyze our own cars and to play games with dead authentication servers.

    From Jalopnik ...

  9. The Battle for Beer Distribution

    October 13, 2015 by Gabe | [mmd] |

    This is what it looks like when a massive industry is disrupted by those with less money and power. There's a huge amount of money in selling beer and it's one of the oldest industries in the US. While craft beer only makes up a very small percentage ...

  10. The Political Weight of Fonts [Link]

    March 29, 2014 by Gabe | [mmd] | ℳ↫

    Thomas Phinney takes a logical walk through the spurious claims that changing fonts will save the US government $400M per year.

    There is a different way an effectively smaller font will definitely save money: by allowing multi-​​page documents, especially long ones, to take fewer pages! So maybe it all ...