The Daily DeX 04/24/2019: Denial Is A Lifestyle

The Daily DeX curates news, opinion, data, polls, arguments, dot-connecting, and the big picture. It’s ammunition for weaponizing our sense-making networks. Load up.

Today: Denial is a lifestyle.

+“Will AI kill developing world growth?” | The BBC

“In developed economies, for instance, robots have replaced well over half of the jobs in the car and related industries in recent decades. Automated systems are already getting higher customer satisfaction ratings than people in call centres, threatening a key source of jobs in many countries. Similarly, AI enabled systems are leading to significant job losses in back-office administrative functions in banking, health, insurance and accounting. These are roles that had in recent years been outsourced to developing countries such as India, Vietnam, South Africa and Morocco.”

–>Anyone who believes artificial intelligence will create more jobs for humans in the way that the assembly line did should read this.

+“Thanks, Harvard. But We’ll Take What’s Ours.” | Jacobin

“It doesn’t take a mental leap to figure out why dissatisfaction with capitalism is growing. The OECD’s March 2019 report on the shrinking global middle class found widespread anger over a system in which “the cost of a middle class lifestyle is rising faster than middle incomes,” in which “each new generation has seen its chances of belonging to the middle income class fall.””

–> Get over the idea that late capitalism is the solution for every problem a society faces. That sort of thinking has led to a globally less stable middle class.

+“The thesaurus is good, valuable, commendable, superb, actually” | The Outline

“Perhaps the best example of this sort of condemnation comes from Simon Winchester, the author of a book about the Oxford English Dictionary, who once wrote in The Atlantic that Roget’s Thesaurus “should be roundly condemned as a crucial part of the engine work that has transported us to our current state of linguistic and intellectual mediocrity” and concludes that it provides “quick and easy solutions for the making of the middlebrow, the mindless, and the mundane.” Or, by way of a more recent (and certainly more mild) example, from The Morning News’s “Tournament of Books”: “Milkman seems to be overly occupied with its own style, its difference, and its reliance on a thesaurus…to notice that the poetry to justify that stylistic occupation is simply absent.””

–>Who keeps a wrench in toolbox without ever using it?

+“Anti-vaxxers are just as bad as climate deniers” | AlterNet

“There is an analogy to be made between anti-vaxxers and climate-change deniers. Both groups place faith in a gut-level sense of their rightful position on an issue that has far-reaching existential implications. And both groups refuse to acknowledge the vast body of sound scientific literature proving them wrong. But on the issue of climate there is an encouraging trend showing that a significant percentage of Americans who once believed global warming wasn’t real are now accepting the science. One report found that about a fifth of those who had recently seen the light did so because they personally felt the impacts of climate change.”

–>Anti-vaxxers are worse than flat-earthers.

+“Cory Booker finds love isn’t all he needs” | Politico

“Polling in the single digits and lagging top-tier competitors in fundraising, Booker this week sought to reboot his campaign, launching a “Justice for All” two-week, national tour heavy on economic policy proposals and social justice messaging. In Iowa, he rolled out an expansive proposal for a new income tax credit and talked about the need for rural infrastructure investment. In Georgia, he unveiled a voting rights plan, vowing to make Election Day a national holiday and talked about restoring voting rights to ex-felons.”

–>Booker was supposed to be the next Obama. There is no next Obama, which is a bigger problem for Democrats than anyone realizes.

+“It’s Official: Monroe Doctrine Is Back To Serve The Neoliberal Order – Analysis” | Eurasia Review

“Then came the unexpected election of Donald Trump. Though throughout his election campaign he expressed a preference for US isolationism and opposition to senseless war, once in office he appointed the very neoconservative war hawks he had earlier criticized for engineering such foreign debacles as the disastrous invasion of Iraq. His appointments to hemispheric policy posts have been the least encouraging, with figures such as the convicted criminal Elliot Abrams reemerging from obscurity to saber-rattle against traditional Latin American foes.”

+“Cowardice and Courage at Middlebury” | The Wall Street Journal

“One student proposed sneaking Mr. Legutko on campus and proceeding with his lecture in a political science class. Professor Matthew Dickinson said he’d allow it if every student in his class approved the idea on a secret ballot. All nine students voted yes. Word got out on social media, and other students trickled in. Mr. Dickinson estimates about 45 students attended.”

–>Charles Murray came to my school back in the day. We simply ignored him.

+“Why Companies Are Failing at Reskilling” | The Wall Street Journal

“Still, letting go of people whose skills are becoming obsolete remains a stock response to shifts in business strategy in part because shareholders can more readily understand a plan that calls for simultaneous layoffs and hiring rather than a resource-intensive training initiative, workforce planners say. They see it as a cost savings, but in reality fresh talent can also be expensive, and layoffs incur billions of dollars in restructuring costs while creating upheaval for those who lose their livelihoods.”

–>The bubble graphs in this article are amazing. 35% chance they’re actually true.


Where are your hammers for these nails?

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