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Slavery, the argument goes, was an inefficient system. The use of enslaved labor has been presented as premodern, a practice that had no ties to the capitalism that allowed America to become a leading global economy. This is untrue. Slavery, particularly the cotton slavery that existed from the end of (People who applaud the achievements of economic growth tend to omit the fact it was achieved off the back of exploitation like this) ...Read More
“To see those, those monkeys from those African countries—damn them, they’re still uncomfortable wearing shoes!” This is the subtext of Reagan’s whole worldview finally rendered overt by Nixon’s secret recordings. Though unsurprising if you’ve been paying any attention, this quote is worth recalling next time you hear a centrist wax ...Read More
“Global warming skeptics sometimes say rising temperatures are just another naturally occurring shift in Earth’s climate, like the Medieval Warm Period of the years 800 to 1200 or the Little Ice Age, a period of cooling that spanned from roughly 1300 to 1850. But a pair of studies published Wednesday provides stark evidence that the rise in global temperatures over the past 150 years has been far more rapid and widespread than any warming period in the past 2,000 years — a finding that undercuts claims that today’s global warming isn’t necessarily the ...Read More
"We are still living in the wake of slavery," says Paul Gardullo, director of the Center for the Study of Global Slavery at the National Museum of African American History and Culture and a member of the Slave Wrecks Project that was involved in the search for Clotilda. “We continue ...Read More
The history of psychiatry, like most medical fields, is wrought with gruesome experiments and extremely sad circumstances, usually portrayed in docudrama or fictive films that ultimately drew me away from the subject. Good to read on this history with a bit less sensation. I never knew the man who invented ...Read More
"Burning Man is to the tech world what the nineteenth-century Protestant church was to the factory." fred turner interviewed in @logic_magazine 🖕
The lack of WMD in Iraq, but not the munitions found on the Ocean liner that brought the US into WW1. Yet another example of the US government lying to it's citizens to go to war.
Great essay on modernist legibility failure mode. Legibility failure mode recipe: ...Read More
notes on the history of the artist as an amateur w nod to a timeline of increasingly sophisticated prosumer tools
"A new study in Nature examines trends of inequality across millennia, noting that inequality more often than not leads to social collapse."
China does not exist. ““China” is, and always has been, an economic category. The Occidental mirage of the “Far East” arose to designate the stubborn persistence of various non-capitalist modes of production on the East Asian mainland. After the “opening” of China demonstrated the Qing empire’s fundamental incoherence, late-imperial nationalists, ...Read More
The tasty Japanese seaweed nori is ubiquitous today, but that wasn't always true. Nori was once called “lucky grass” because every year's harvest was entirely dependent on luck. Then, during World War II, luck ran out. No nori would grow off the coast of Japan, and farmers were distraught. But ...Read More
This is about super long summers and super long winters. Previous ice age was triggered, according to one theory, by a bacteria infestation that abruptly consumed all CO2 from the atmosphere. Bacteria cannot compete with us in influence as we are about to prove to the universe. But there is There are significant geopolitical consequences of this global process in which humans chose to play a role that before was played by brainless bacteria. ...Read More