Category Archives: The Media

President Donald Trump

Donald Trump won the election last night, which, unfortunately, didn’t surprise me as much as I wish it did. I don’t like Trump, and I have made no secret of it.

trump-acceptance

Trump giving his acceptance speech last night. Photo: Mark Wilson/Getty Images

However, President-elect Trump did give a great speech last night. For example:

“Now it is time for America to bind the wounds of division, have to get together. To all Republicans and Democrats and independents across this nation, I say it is time for us to come together as one united people. It is time. I pledge to every citizen of our land that I will be President for all of Americans, and this is so important to me. For those who have chosen not to support me in the past, of which there were a few people, I’m reaching out to you for your guidance and your help so that we can work together and unify our great country.”

I was born in Kansas City, Missouri, in the Show-Me State. My request of Mr. Trump is simple:

“Show me.”

  • Show me that you will seek the guidance of those outside your coalition by appointing a Democrat or independent to your Cabinet. Obama kept Republican Robert Gates in his cabinet after his election, and they got along well enough that Obama gave Gates the Presidential Medal of Freedom on his retirement.
  • Show me that you won’t repeal Obamacare without having something in place so that people with existing conditions–I think “pre-existing conditions” is redundant–don’t get discarded by their insurers at the first opportunity.
  • Show me that you really didn’t mean it when you said you would “cancel every unconstitutional executive action, memorandum and order issued by President Obama,” but will instead review them and cancel the ones that truly need to be cancelled–and there are many, certainly.

Much of what Trump put in his “Contract with the American Voter” is good, necessary stuff. Improving our infrastructure will certainly create jobs–something that I have been wanting for a long time–but I question whether the Republican Congress will approve the spending. Properly funding and revitalizing the Veteran’s Administration is long overdue. Streamlining the business regulatory environment is also important. I don’t know how I feel about Trump’s desire to renegotiate NAFTA, but the treaty has been in effect for over twenty years, so it probably needs a tweak here and there. I think suspending immigration from ISIS zones is harsh, but if the suspension is for a very limited period while we quickly ramp up our ability to vet applicants, it might work.

There are certainly things I don’t like, such as school vouchers, the Wall, and ending defense sequestration–I think we can make due with our current budget if we detangle from Iraq and Afghanistan. If Trump can show that he’s willing to work with all sides to get things done, I think some of these can be managed to minimize collateral damage. I’m pessimistic, but hopeful. When I thought he should have tacked toward the center once he had wrapped up the nomination, he turned hard right with his pick of Mike Pence. I hope that now that he actually has the job he will mellow out his rhetoric.

Now, we wait, and give him a chance.
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Filed under Republicans, The Media

To Meme or not to Meme…

I like a good meme as much as anyone, but commenting on other people’s memes seems to get me into more trouble on social media than anything else.

I can’t help myself. I feel a need to comment when someone posts a meme that is obviously misleading, lying, or taking things out of context. I’ll give you three examples:

From the Democrats

occupy

The first sign that this is a bad meme is that it is quoting a fictional character from a television show. The real problem, though, is that the meme is terribly inaccurate. The meme names six bills that benefited Americans and claims that liberals supported all six and conservatives opposed all of them:

  1. Social Security
  2. The Civil Rights Act
  3. The Voting Rights Act
  4. Medicare
  5. The Clean Air Act
  6. The Clean Water Act

Had the meme stopped with Social Security and Medicare, it would have done just fine. The Civil Rights Act of 1964–the first one with teeth–was a bipartisan bill, with more Democratic opposition than Republican. The Voting Rights Act of 1965 was jointly sponsored by the Senate Majority and Minority Leaders, and, like the Civil Rights Act, it had more opponents among Democrats than Republicans.

The environmental bills are much more problematic. The Clean Air Act of 1970 was passed unanimously by the Senate and had one no vote in the House. It gave teeth to the original Clean Air Act of 1963 and led to Richard Nixon establishing the Environmental Protection Agency. The Clean Water Act of 1972 passed unanimously. It was vetoed by Nixon–because he was opposed to the pork in the bill: His budget request had already quadrupled funding for clean water, and the bill was passed over his veto. Environmental legislation used to be bipartisan, and it can be argued that the two best environmental presidents were Nixon, for founding the EPA, and Theodore Roosevelt, for pushing the Antiquities Act of 1906, which effectively started the National Park System.

On the other two items, there wasn’t as much disagreement as the meme would suggest. The Social Security Act of 1935 passed the House 372-33, and the Social Security Act of 1965, which established Medicare, did have significant Republican support, even though slightly more Republicans voted against it than for it. Neither of these bills passed with the standard party-line votes we most often see in today’s Congress.

Yes, the GOP usually opposes environmental, civil rights, and social welfare legislation today, but it wasn’t always that way, despite what this meme suggests.

From the Republicans

disqualified

I have no argument with the claim that, by allowing classified materials to be sent on a private email server, Hillary Clinton broke the law. (Whether she should be jailed or not is another issue entirely. Historically, imprisonment on this is based on two things: Whether the material was leaked intentionally and the rank of the person who made the leak. It may not be right, but high-ranking government or military officials who inadvertently leak classified information are rarely punished with more than a slap on the wrist.)

The law quoted in the meme, however, has absolutely nothing to do with this case. Clinton had the emails destroyed after the State Department requested all emails relating to State Department business. The law quoted in the meme has to do with documents held by courts, judicial officers, or public officers. The deleted emails were never held or requested by the courts, as the FBI declined to recommend charging Secretary Clinton with a crime.

There are other laws that Clinton broke or may have broke that would have been appropriate for a meme. In my opinion, when you post inaccurate or misleading information in a meme to show your opposition to a candidate, you hurt your case. It would have been so easy to create an accurate version of this meme that properly made their case.

From the Greens

packard

This is a picture of the Packard Plant in Detroit. Yes, this factory made Packards and Studebakers, and was closed in 1958. NAFTA came into force in January, 1994.

Was it Marty McFly, Doctor Who, or Bill and Ted who went back in time to make sure that NAFTA caused the demise of Packard thirty-seven years earlier?

There are plenty of legitimate criticisms of NAFTA, and it would not have been difficult to find an image of a closed factory that could be partially blamed on NAFTA. This picture looked better, so the meme author used it to misinform voters.


It is five days until Election Day and the last day of early voting here in Chattanooga. Keep reading and thinking and questioning, and make an informed decision–if you haven’t already.

Thanks again for your support. As always, if you have any questions, comments, or concerns, let me know.

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Filed under Listening, Technology, The Media

Change happens. Can you handle it? Should you?

Recently, I was discussing North Carolina’s HB 2, the “bathroom” bill, with a conservative friend of mine. His position, like that of many conservatives, is that people should use the facilities for their biological sex and that no other criteria matters. This is the way it has always been and there’s no need to change it. I argued that what conservatives were doing was changing it, since before the law people could usually use whichever bathroom they wanted, as long as they went into a stall and kept to themselves–which is what people should be doing anyway.

This is really a “small picture” issue. During the conversation my friend suggested that I see Future Shock. I have seen the documentary and read the book upon which it was based, although it has been about thirty years. The premise is that technology is causing society to change so quickly that many people suffer from “future shock” because they are unable to keep up and cope with the rapid rate of change.

I first got online in late 1982 or early 1983, so I was far ahead of the curve as far as the information revolution goes. What we are seeing today is a communications revolution. Marginalized people can now go online and find people with similar characteristics. A transgender person in a small town in the 1960s, if they went public, would be treated like a freak, so they most likely remained closeted. Even if they knew another transgender person, the likelihood was that they didn’t actually know they were transgender, since the default position was to keep that hidden. Today, that person can go online and instantly find hundreds of people who can relate to their life, and chances are pretty good that they can find someone else locally. Similarly, Red Dwarf fans can find other Red Dwarf fans, atheists can find other atheists, English football fans can find other English football fans, and, unfortunately, white supremacists can find other white supremacists. Almost any tiny minority can find other people with similar interests and problems–and they can organize to help each other.

For a California-based English football fan, that may be getting a group together to convince a pub to open at 7 a.m. on Saturdays so they can watch a match together. For other minorities this gives them the means to organize politically. Atheists now have easily accessible legal resources to help them keep religion out of public schools and government. Transgender people can share information about which employers are accepting. Information has empowered them. The problem with this, of course, is that people who already had and used power don’t normally like it when others figure out that they have power to use as well.

Of course, I am pretty sure my friend and I had two very different conclusions on how to address the issue. The conservative view, as it has always been, is to slow societal change: The old system worked just fine, so we don’t need to change it. The liberal view is that change is inevitable, so everyone should accept it and adapt to the new norms.

As with just about everything else, I fall somewhere in the middle. I don’t think that trying to slow change works very well. In general, I like to see a two-pronged approach:

  • Manage change
  • Help people adapt

Well-managed change can usually be identified by the outpouring of anger from both sides. “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” is a good example of this. LGB members of the military didn’t want to stay in the closet to serve, and conservative members of the military didn’t want LGB people serving at all. It was a solid middle ground that gave time for the conservatives in the military to adapt–or retire–while not denying military careers to LGB people. You can argue that President Clinton could have gone straight to giving LGBT people full freedom of gender identity in the military, but it might have severely disrupted an organization that is conservative by nature. The military took a generation to adapt, but it did adapt.

We had a similar transition with gay marriage, from civil unions to a few states legalizing it to the Supreme Court making it legal everywhere. I am never happy with one group being denied the same rights as the majority, but some people need shock absorbers. Racial integration in the military was slow, as was racial integration in schools. We are still moving–too slowly, in my opinion–toward gender equality in the workplace and in politics, because the people who have power don’t like relinquishing it.

One of the biggest problems is the media. I infuriated my nine-year-old daughter last night by describing the Bechdel test to her, and pointing out how few movies passed it. I don’t think every movie should pass the Bechdel test, but I also don’t see any reason why a kid’s movie like Kung Fu Panda 3 should fail. More women go to the movies than men, so, from a business standpoint, studios should cater to that. Yes, there will always be “chick flicks” and testosterone-fueled action movies, but there’s really no good reason that the 80% of the movies in the middle shouldn’t have roughly equal numbers of male and female leading roles. If we see more equality in entertainment, society will more readily adapt to equality in the real world.

Where we get problems are when people try to manage change by blocking change completely, such as conservatives wanting to stop the immigration of Muslim refugees until we can better screen them–but neglecting to fund improved screening tools or adding additional investigators. Similarly, wanting to deport immigrants and build walls to keep new immigrants out won’t work, unless you also work to reduce the demand for cheap labor here while helping our neighbors improve their economies to reduce the supply of cheap labor there.

There are many areas where Congress could help facilitate change. Taking gender pay inequality as an example:

  • Universal single-payer health care would allow women with small children to stay in the workforce part-time so they don’t lose ground to their male counterparts.
  • Paid maternity and paternity leave would allow parents to better share child rearing responsibilities.
  • Better child care tax credits or publicly-funded child care would also help keep women in the workforce.
  • Corporate tax credits for companies that can show equality in pay and benefits for female staff–and tax penalties for those who can’t.

I would be interested to research how the increased tax revenue from higher income for female workers would offset some of the additional costs for the first three bullets. My hope is that increased job satisfaction would also lead to increased productivity and profits for additional tax revenues. It wouldn’t be difficult to test some of these on a smaller scale on the state and local level, and I’m sure we could study how well similar programs work in Europe and Canada.

Most people have a hard time with change. It’s often tough to understand that, especially when the change they oppose is a change other people so desperately want or need. Forcing change down someone’s throat almost always triggers the gag reflex, so, if you can, cut it into smaller pieces for them.

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What Scares You? The Wrong Things.

Bozo the Clown (Silver Bear Cafe)

Bozo the Clown (Silver Bear Cafe)

This morning I decided to do a little test. I went to major news sites and grabbed their top stories. From Fox News:

Fox News April 12, 2016 Lead Story

Fox News April 12, 2016 Lead Story

The other sites I visited all led with stories on the presidential campaign, but they have all been guilty of the same fear mongering as Fox. If you do a search for “online dating safety” you will get links to many horror stories, but what you won’t find–at least I didn’t–are reliable statistics for how dangerous online dating is. Oh, there are a ton of statistics out there, but when I try to track down the sources I come up empty. This New York Magazine story had a horribly leading quote:

Beckman wants a bigger disclaimer on Match.com’s site, like a pack of cigarettes. “They don’t say one in five are part of an attempted murder or one in five are killed,” she told Fox5. “They don’t tell you people are missing.”

Seriously? “One in five”??? I would like to see some reliable stats on whether online dating is more dangerous than other means. My gut feeling is that it is more dangerous than being introduced by a friend, but probably as dangerous or slightly less dangerous than meeting someone in a bar, but since I don’t have any reliable data, I really can’t make an informed judgment.

Fear gets ratings, so news outlets will exploit it to get readers, viewers, or listeners. Politicians also exploit it. The most notable example is Trump using fear of illegal immigrants to get votes, but Cruz feeds on Christian fears of secularism bringing down society, Clinton rallies her base by encouraging fear of guns and back alley abortions, and Sanders wants his supporters to fear the rich. Whether or not these fears are justified, the fact is that all candidates rely on fear to get votes.

[Note: As I was writing this, I went back over the posts I have made this election cycle. I was pleased to find that I haven’t used fear myself. It is very tempting to do so, but I’d rather stay as positive as possible.]

What annoys me is that people are constantly afraid of the wrong things. Fear of flying is a common fear, but it is almost completely irrational. Per mile traveled, the fatality rate is about fifty times higher for driving in an automobile than flying. (Fatality Analysis Reporting System (NHTSA) and General Aviation: Accidents and Fatalities) You are about eight times more likely to be killed driving to the airport than on the flight itself.

“Stranger danger” is another pet peeve of mine. The overwhelming majority–over 95%–of crimes against children are committed by friends or family members of the victim’s family (See Free Range Kids for a long list of well-sourced statistics on crime trends). The world is as safe as it has ever been–but you wouldn’t know that from the news. One of my standard rules for Zari when we go to Coolidge Park is “Go talk to strangers,” because that’s a good way to make friends.

Zari turns nine next week. The day after her birthday, despite her opposition, she is going to the doctor to get some shots. Some of the shots are for her summer trip to India, but one of the shots is Gardasil. Gardasil prevents the human papillomavirus (HPV) strains that cause 70% of cervical cancers, as well as preventing other cancers and diseases. I have seen friends die of cervical cancer, and I’m not sure I know a worse way to die. Age nine is the earliest she can get the vaccine, so I’m not waiting.

I recently got in an argument with an anti-vaxxer over the safety of Gardasil. See, there is an alleged side-effect of the vaccine: Guillain–Barré syndrome. Guillain–Barré syndrome is a painful muscle weakness caused by the immune system attacking the nervous system. In most cases, it lasts about a week. The risk of this side effect–for which a causal link has not been proven, is about 3 in 1,000,000. So about 0.0003% of women who get the Gardasil vaccine will get Guillain-Barré. (Stats from WebMD.)

Now, cervical cancer is a different story. According to the CDC, 12,042 women were diagnosed with cervical cancer in 2012, with 4,074 deaths. There are about 126 million adult women in the U.S. (US Census), so that gives us an annual death rate of 0.0032%. Now, Gardasil only prevents 70% of those, so we have an annual death rate of preventable cervical cancers of 0.0022%. So, we have a Gardasil-preventable annual death rate that is over seven times higher than the rate of Guillain-Barré that might be caused by the vaccine. But that’s not the whole story, since Gardasil is administered once, while the annual death rate is, well, annual. With the average female life expectancy at birth of over eighty (US Census), that means that the chance of dying from cervical cancer is over four hundred times higher than getting Guillain-Barré from the vaccine. And I don’t know about you, but I consider a week of pain to be significantly less severe than death. If you are more afraid of two injections than death from cervical cancer, you’re not rational.

Diseases are dangerous; vaccines aren’t. Strangers aren’t more dangerous than people you already know. Cars are more dangerous than almost every other form of transportation. Alcohol and tobacco cause far more deaths than marijuana.

It’s OK to be afraid. Just make sure you are afraid of the right things. Don’t text and drive. Look both ways before crossing the street. Put your baby to sleep on her back. Wear sunscreen and mosquito repellent. Don’t swim alone. Use protection. Wash your vegetables.

Be safe, but have fun, too.

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Enemy or Competitor?

enemy

  1. one that is antagonistic to another; especially:  one seeking to injure, overthrow, or confound an opponent

  2. something harmful or deadly <alcohol was his greatest enemy>

  3. a:  a military adversary   b:  a hostile unit or force

competitor

  1. :  one that competes: as

    a:rival

    b:  one selling or buying goods or services in the same market as another

    c:  an organism that lives in competition with another

Too often, people and the media exaggerate conflict, presenting a friendly conflict as a war, turning competitors into enemies. They want us to believe that Tom Brady and Peyton Manning are enemies, that Coke and Pepsi want to destroy each other, and that Walt Disney World and Universal Studios should want the other to fail. The reality is that Brady and Manning pushed each other to become better players. The rivalry between Coke and Pepsi has forced each to create new products, innovate marketing and packaging, and compete for sponsorships. The Disney/Universal rivalry results in a better experience because their competition forces the building of new attractions and a constant focus on improving customer service. There may be some trash talk between people in these organizations, but no one actually wants harm to come to their opponents.

I am competing with Chuck Fleischmann for his Congressional seat. I hope that my campaign, at the least, causes him to think about the issues and, assuming he wins, becomes a better Representative. I don’t want to destroy him. I don’t want the destruction of the Republican and Democratic parties, but I would like them to be more responsive to the needs of the country. I want to compete with Fleischmann and, hopefully, the parties, to force everyone, including myself, to do better.

Too many people are treating competitors as enemies. Republicans talk about Obama like he is the Antichrist, while Democrats talk about Republicans only being interested in the rich and big business. Liberals regularly compare Donald Trump to Adolf Hitler, while Trump incites his supporters to violently remove protesters. Christian and Muslim rhetoric is often terribly violent. Too many people are really angry–often, unfortunately, including myself–but that’s the wrong emotion, I think.

I have a friend who is very well-educated but with whom I disagree very often. We can look at the exact same facts and come to diametrically opposed conclusions. This isn’t because we don’t understand the facts–in fact, I’m quite confident that he understands the facts at least as well as I do–but rather, we have completely different world views. Our differences come from how the new data fits into our existing paradigms. We have some very spirited discussions, but I’ve never felt like he’s my enemy. He’s a friendly competitor, and our debates have led both of us, I think, to refine our positions and to develop deeper understandings. Sometimes we even find common ground.

I had a professor who once told me that there is nothing more motivating than a competent enemy. While true, it isn’t something I want. I’d much rather be motivated by a competent competitor. After the debate, we go out to the pub and throw down a couple of beers, not out into the alley to throw a few punches.

A little respect goes a long way.

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Frustrated?

So, you know too many people who voted for some idiot instead of the person you supported. You can’t understand how people could vote the way they did. It’s obvious that if that candidate wins it is the worst possible thing that could happen to the U.S.A.

Not so much.

Why do people vote how they vote?

Unfortunately, the last reason for people to vote the way they do is because they’ve taken the time to thoroughly research the candidates and issues.

Some people think they’ve done the research, because they’ve watched the news, debates and speeches. I actively avoid watching debates and speeches. I listen to debates and I read speeches–I’ve been reading the State of the Union address for the past decade or so–because I don’t want to be swayed by candidates’ appearances or audience reactions. Most of the time, the taller candidate wins Presidential elections. I’m guessing that this is because taller candidates seem stronger. Trump is 6’2″, while Rubio is 5’10” and Cruz is 5’8″. Trump also has a huge advantage in name recognition from his years in the spotlight.

091715_heights

(Fox News graphic)

What is even worse is when people vote based on the negative things candidates say about one another. Why would you believe anything someone says about their adversary without doing your own research? The two ends of the spectrum for this are criticisms of the Sanders spending proposals and Trump’s wall. If you do the research, it isn’t difficult to see where Sanders has explained exactly how he is going to pay for his spending. You may not believe those explanations–I think  they are a bit rosy–but they are plausible. But, because his opponents scream “We can’t afford this!” almost no one does the research. They just take the screaming at face value. Trump, on the other hand, hasn’t said anything more than “I will make Mexico pay for it.” How he will do that he hasn’t made clear.

In short, people vote because of appearances, promises, and screaming. Most people don’t have the time, patience, or ability to do the research, so they let others do it for them.

Why it doesn’t matter

All of the Presidential candidates can promise the world, but, for the most part, they can’t do anything, because the Founding Fathers were pretty smart guys. They invented a great system of checks and balances. As long as neither party has a supermajority in both houses of Congress, there’s not a whole heck of a lot the President can do on his own. (The worst-case predictions have the Democrats losing three seats in the Senate, so the Republicans would still be short of the sixty they need.) If the Republicans think they’ll get a Scalia-level conservative on the Supreme Court, they are as deluded as the Democrats who think the Senate will approve a liberal. President Trump isn’t going to get Congress to approve his wall any more than Congress would approve Sanders’ spending plan.

What now?

Educate yourselves. Help your friends educate themselves. Be nice. Explain, don’t scream, and listen. Ask questions.

  • “Why do you think the guy whose catch phrase is ‘You’re Fired!’ would be a good jobs President?”
  • “How much do you think President Sanders can accomplish with a Republican Congress?”
  • “Do you think the Republicans will even talk to Hillary Clinton?”
  • “Do you think we should elect people to Congress who can work with people on the other side?”

Obviously, that last question is the most important.

Thanks for reading.

Topher

 

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My News Sources

Ever since I changed my major from aerospace engineering to international relations in college–in 1990, the end of the Cold War was killing aerospace jobs, plus I was pretty awful at calculus–I have been a news junkie. Being on a university campus, it was fairly easy for me to get a variety of news sources, and every day I read the Los Angeles Times, New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and the Times of London. I had CNN in the background when I read the LA Times over breakfast, and I’d listen to various international radio stations on my shortwave radio while doing homework at night. I quickly learned that every news source was biased, so it was irresponsible to get news from a single source.

Every source is biased simply because of the stories they choose to cover. No source can cover every story, so they have to filter. Other sources are blatantly biased, but knowing a source’s political leaning can actually make it more reliable, since I don’t have to guess. I do my best to look at sources across the political spectrum, and I try to balance American and international sources.

Today, the internet has made it very easy for me to get a wide variety of news sources on demand. I’ll split them into categories for easy consumption.

Television

I don’t own a television. Mine was stolen three years ago and I realized shortly thereafter that I didn’t miss it. The only time I do miss it is when a major story hits, but when I say “major” I mean MAJOR. 9/11. Indian Ocean Tsunami. Things like that, but those only happen every few years. Frankly, for those things I can go to a bar or a friend’s house and watch.

Having said that, I do follow all of the local television stations on Twitter and click through to their sites when a story is of interest.

Print

I don’t currently subscribe to a newspaper. The only reason for this is that by the time the newspaper hits my driveway, the news is almost (at least?) a day old.

I visit the website for the Chattanooga Times Free Press nearly every day to keep up with local breaking news. I also periodically visit the sites of the New York TimesWashington Post, and Los Angeles Times (more often during football season to read about USC). Most often, though, I go to newspaper websites through links from other sources.

Radio

I listen to the local talk station here, WGOW, but I also listen to the BBC World Service and the CBC on Sirius XM. A couple of times each week I listen to Radio Havana Cuba on my shortwave radio. I use the TuneIn Radio app on my phone to listen to other international stations, trying to rotate through different regions. In the past week I have listened to Liberty Radio in Nigeria, Radio New Zealand International, and World Radio Switzerland. China Radio International and Chennai Live (India) are also regular choices. In the U.S., I listen to American Indian Movement Radio about one night each month.

Online

Besides reading what my friends post on Facebook and seeing what comes across my Twitter feed, I use Feedly to organize the other sites I like for news.

Getting information off the Internet is like taking a drink from a fire hydrant. - Mitchell Kapor

Blogs

I read Whatever, science-fiction author John Scalzi’s blog, and Frugal GM, a gaming blog by a friend of mine that helps people run their roleplaying games on a budget. I read a few other blogs, but I put them into other categories.

Information

I use this category as a catch-all for things that don’t fit elsewhere. I follow Mental Floss mostly for puzzles and trivia, Jezebel for female-focused news, The Consumerist for consumer and corporate-abuse news, and Information Is Beautiful because they often give me a better perspective on presenting information. National Parks Traveler gives me ideas of where to take Zari next and also lets me know when our National Parks are being endangered or abused. I read Free Range Kids because I think it’s important to raise strong, independent kids who aren’t scared of the world.Atlas Obscura is an interesting site that I normally use to find places to adventure.

Makers

I read Cool ToolsLifehacker, and Make to discover new consumer-level technology and better ways to fix and create things.

Philosophy

PostSecret gives me a weekly view, sometimes humorous, of mental health problems. Why Evolution Is True is self-explanatory, but it gives a solid perspective on science education in schools. I read Christian Post and Friendly Atheist to get both sides of the debate on religion in schools and government.

Technology

I read Boing BoingGizmodoEngadget, and Slashdot for news on technology in society.

News Aggregators

I like Drew Curtis’ FARK.com. The humorous headlines for real stories often puts the right perspective on the news.


 

So, if you want to know where I get my views on the world, there’s the not-so-short answer. If you have any recommendations on anything else I should be reading, watching, or listening to, please let me know.

Thanks for reading!

Topher

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