Autocracy: Rules for Survival (nybooks.com)

Autocracy: Rules for Survival

  • Rule #1: Believe the autocrat. He means what he says. Whenever you find yourself thinking that he is exaggerating, that is our innate tendency to reach for a rationalization.
  • Rule #2: Do not be taken in by small signs of normality.
  • Rule #3: Institutions will not save you.
  • Rule #4: Be outraged.
  • Rule #5: Don’t make compromises.
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No, Trump, We Can’t Just Get Along – Charles Blow’s uncompromising rejection of Trump after Trump’s apparently conciliatory meeting at the New York Times

No, Trump, We Can’t Just Get Along

You don’t get a pat on the back for ratcheting down from rabid after exploiting that very radicalism to your advantage. Unrepentant opportunism belies a staggering lack of character and caring that can’t simply be vanquished from memory. You did real harm to this country and many of its citizens, and I will never — never — forget that.

I have not only an ethical and professional duty to call out how obscene your very existence is at the top of American government; I have a moral obligation to do so.

I’m not trying to convince anyone of anything, but rather to speak up for truth and honor and inclusion. This isn’t just about you, but also about the moral compass of those who see you for who and what you are, and know the darkness you herald is only held at bay by the lights of truth.

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The Electoral College Was Meant to Stop Men Like Trump From Being President (The Atlantic)

The Electoral College Was Meant to Stop Men Like Trump From Being President

As Michael Signer explains in his book, the framers were particularly afraid of the people choosing a demagogue. The electors, Hamilton believed, would prevent someone with “talents for low intrigue, and the little arts of popularity” from becoming president. And they would combat “the desire in foreign powers to gain an improper ascendant in our councils.” They would prevent America’s adversaries from meddling in its elections. The founders created the Electoral College, in other words, in part to prevent the election of someone like Donald Trump.

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The Right Way to Resist Trump (NYTimes)

The Right Way to Resist Trump

..the Berlusconi parallel could offer an important lesson in how to avoid transforming a razor-thin victory into a two-decade affair.  Mr. Berlusconi was able to govern Italy for as long as he did mostly thanks to the incompetence of his opposition. It was so rabidly obsessed with his personality that any substantive political debate disappeared; it focused only on personal attacks, the effect of which was to increase Mr. Berlusconi’s popularity. His secret was an ability to set off a Pavlovian reaction among his leftist opponents, which engendered instantaneous sympathy in most moderate voters. Mr. Trump is no different.

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Stop Shaming Economically Disadvantaged Trump Supporters. Instead, help them (which will, in the long run, help the country)

http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/projects/cp/opinion/election-night-2016/stop-shaming-trump-supporters

We need to reach out to Donald J. Trump voters in a spirit of empathy and contrition. Only then can we help working people understand that their failure to “get ahead” isn’t their fault and that their rage is legitimate (even if the resulting racism is not).   They’ve been trained to think the US is a meritocracy, but it’s not, and they don’t realize (or rather feel) that.

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Donald Trump is a unique threat to American democracy (Wash Post)

I think this article from the Washington Post pretty much sums it up for me:

Mr. Trump’s politics of denigration and division could strain the bonds that have held a diverse nation together. His contempt for constitutional norms might reveal the nation’s two-century-old experiment in checks and balances to be more fragile than we knew.

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Words LCV members used to describe Donald Trump

The League of Conservation Voters asked it’s members to describe Donald Trump — here are the top results!

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The Game That Conquered the World (Minecraft)

I like the fact that, in Minecraft, kids take basic rules and do things the game’s authors never envisoned.

Take a look at this article in The Atlantic Monthly where, a 46-year-old father who is anti everything online tries the game to see what attracts his son to it. As you might expect, it surprises him:

Can it be true that in Minecraft, to apply a line of Philip Larkin’s, how we live measures our own nature? An octopus’s garden, a whirling hall of knives … Choose, minecrafter. Build. It’s all you. My son, to my astonishment, is building an international airport. Me, I’ve killed a couple of cows.

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Beautiful picture of a Spacex launch

JCSAT-14 Launch

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Stabilising to the Milky Way shows the rotation of the earth

Rotation of the Earth.

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