8.28.2017 Daily Links

  A Thought for the Day   

People can no more avoid all chaos than they can, as an act of will, preclude all obesity or bad weather or cancer, which is not to say that we should embrace chaotic calamity, in league with ‘the Joker‘ and ‘Dr. Doom‘ and other cultural exemplars of entropic ascendancy and the gangsters and racketeers who inevitably accompany any and all ‘circling-the-drain’ periods, when discombobulating happenstance becomes a daily occurrence, but to insist that denial and pretense, in other words all views in which individual actors can have any lasting impact short of the manifestation of organized ventures to bring about collective authority and responsibility, weaken and worsen social conditions that cry out instead for mutuality and solidarity in every phase of society’s multiple and intensifying crises, any one of which threatens not only anyone’s particular thriving but also our joint survival.

 This Day in History  

CC BY-NC by rocbolt
CC BY-NC by rocbolt

Today is a nascent commemoration of the life and condemnation of the murder of Emmett Till, as well as the seventeenth decade since Scientific American began publication; MORE HERE

 in the mountainous North of the Italian Peninsula one thousand five hundred and twenty-six years ago,Ostrogoth soldiers forced their way into Italy by defeating a Roman army in the Alps; a century and almost three quarters later, in 663, Korean armies forced Japanese invaders who were seeking to reassert their dominance of the Korean peninsula to withdraw; another five hundred and twenty six years later, in 1189, European forces of the Third Crusade began the Siege of Acre in what is now again contested territory in Syria; four hundred ninety-four years before the here and now, Ottoman Turks attacked Belgrade, seeking to retain the imperial hold on the Balkans; meanwhile, three years hence across the Atlantic, in 1524, Mayan allies of Spain rebelled against the Spanish invaders who had opportunistically used their help and then turned on them in Guatemala; four and a half centuries prior to the present late Summer days, Pedro Aviles led ships that made landfall near where their occupants founded St. Augustine, Florida, the first lasting European settlement in what is today the Continental U.S.; forty-four years subsequently, in 1609, ships under the command of Henry Hudson entered Delaware Bay; another thirty-six years along the temporal trek, in 1645, Dutch philosopher Hugo Grotius experienced his final thoughts; in a decisive victory, Parliamentary troops three years thereafter, in 1648, accepted the surrender of Royalist forces, ending the siege of Colchester; two hundred sixty-six years back, the infant who grew up to become Johann Wolfgang Goethe was born; a hundred eighty-five years ahead of this point in time and space, the Baltimore & Ohio steam engine, Tom Thumb, first raced a horse drawn cart cross-country; three years later precisely, in 1833, Queen Victoria assented to the abolition of slavery throughout most of the British Empire; a dozen years henceforth, in 1845, Scientific American published its first issue, so that today it celebrates its 170th anniversary; a hundred thirty-six years ago, British imperial forces captured Cetshwayo, the final King of a more or less independent Zulu nation; twenty years beyond that development, in 1899, six thousand miles North in Russia, a baby boy entered our midst who would mature as the prolific writer and critic, Andrei Platonov; four years later, in 1903, designer and author Frederick Law Olmstead drew his agonal breaths; a decade past that juncture, in 1913,Princess Wilhelmina ironically enough opened the Peace Palace in Belgium, and the baby boy who grew into Canadian author and critic Robertson Davies came into the world; three years nearer to now, in 1916, the infant male who became sociologist and thinker C. Wright Mills gave an initial shout; another three hundred sixty-five days onward, in 1917, ten suffragettes in the District of Columbia endured arrest for the crime of demanding of their ‘leaders’ that women receive the right to vote; seven years still closer to the current context, in 1924, Georgia citizens who sought to secede from the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics rose against the Soviets; another seven years afterward, in 1931, France and the U.S.S.R. signed a non-aggression pact; a decade more along the temporal road, in 1941German Nazis in Ukraine, along with their local fascist allies, began the systematic murder of some several tens of thousands of Hungarian Jews, thereby setting the stage for events that led like a crow flies to the Maidan ‘uprisings’ more recently;a pair of years further onward in space and time, in 1943, Danish citizens and workers conducted a general strike against their own Nazi occupiers; a typical eight years’ transits yet later on, in 1951, a girl child entered our midst who would grow up as the poet and multi-jurisdictional Poet Laureate, Rita Dove; a duo of years even more proximate to the present, in 1953, Nippon Television broadcast the first Japanese TV show, replete with advertising; two years later, in 1955, Emmett Till was murdered for the fourteen year-old’s supposed temerity of looking and whistling at a White woman; seven hundred thirty-one days after that, in 1957, meanwhile, Strom Thurmond of South Carolina led a Senate filibuster against the Civil Rights Act of 1957; six years later, however, in 1963, in a turn toward humanity, Martin Luther King delivered a speech, “I Have a Dream,” to hundreds of thousands of listeners in the District of Columbia; another year still nearer to our time, in 1964, riots against police violence and White supremacy erupted in Philadelphia; riots against a more generalized political ‘establishment’ continued in Chicago, four years subsequent to that point, in 1968, at the United States Democratic National Convention thereby disestablishing the so-called foreign policy meeting of the minds among ReDemoPubliCratiCans; twenty-eight years back, actor, director, and screenwriter John Huston died: three years hence, in 1990, Iraq annexed Kuwait; one more year along time’s arc, in 1991, the Soviet Union formally accepted Mikhail Gorbachev’s resignation; three years before our moment in time, activist feminist writer Shulamith Firestone died.

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 Writers Tools Issues 

Journalistic Funding Opportunities

A Nieman Lab post that examines ways in which journalists seek funding: “What if you got so fed up with the problems of funding journalism that you just got a bunch of people together and decided to fund it yourself?

That’s what Phillip Smith, a senior fellow at Mozilla focusing on misinformation, did with other journalism benefactors in British Columbia. He and a group of eleven other people with ties to the journalism industry recently launched the Uncharted Journalism Fund. A group of trustees commits to each chipping in CAD $100 (USD $78.62) a month for a handpicked project proposed by a local journalist that otherwise wouldn’t be published; chosen projects receive up to $3,000.”

 General Media & ‘Intellectual Property’ Issues 

Roger Annis on Russiagate

A look at some of the Russian media stuff out there, and how it harms prospects for future peace: “The following article in Pacific Standard (published by the California-based Social Justice Foundation) is another fine example of a progressive, liberal publication in the United States challenging the anti-Russia prejudice and propaganda which marks the new cold war. In this, the liberal publications stand head and shoulders above left-wing publications that bend or cave to the anti-Russia drive.”

 Recent Events 

Roger Annis on Russiagate

A look at some of the Russian stuff out there: “The following article in Pacific Standard (published by the California-based Social Justice Foundation) is another fine example of a progressive, liberal publication in the United States challenging the anti-Russia prejudice and propaganda which marks the new cold war. In this, the liberal publications stand head and shoulders above left-wing publications that bend or cave to the anti-Russia drive.”

 General Past & Present Issues 

Carl Sagan’s Views on American Prospects

From Waking Times, a genius not just at science and cosmology, Carl Sagan proves his worth again with these predictions: “It was the dumbing down of America that worried Sagan at the end of his life, and in The Demon-Haunted World he offered a rationally prophetic examination of where America was heading. Now, some 20 years later, his words are resonating with those who are paying attention to the changing cultural climate today.”