Politics


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The Bio-fuels Boondoggle

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If something’s desirable it ought not to be necessary to force people to buy it. Chipotle, for instance, doesn’t need to spend millions in de facto bribes (“campaign contributions”) to wheedle Congress into passing burrito subsidies. Nor are you forced to eat at Chipotle if burritos and bowls are not your thing. The market has…

What’s The Carbon Footprint of The PopeMobile?

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The Pope, it’s said, wears Prada. And travels by Mercedes, too. But apparently, he’d prefer you (and millions of other ordinary human beings) not. Because “global warming.” Er… make that “climate change.” The new – more general – term for the allegedly human-caused alteration of the planet’s weather. “Global warming” had to go because global…

They’re All Government Motors Now

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GM gets ribbed a lot (and rightly so) for being “government motors” … having accepted (no, demanded) enormous sums of taxpayer money in order to avoid bankruptcy. The bailouts were the corporate equivalent of EBT (which conservatives somewhat oddly or at least, inconsistently, dislike . . . their ire apparently reserved for needy and greedy humans rather than…

Hacked

Charlie Miller (right) a security researcher at Twitter,  and Chris Valasek (left), director of Vehicle Security Research at IOActive, have exposed the security vulnerabilities in automobiles by hacking into cars remotely, controlling the cars' various controls from the radio volume to the brakes. Photographed on Wednesday, July 1, 2015 in Ladue, Mo. (Photo © Whitney Curtis for WIRED.com)

Well, I told ya so. First they hacked the Google car. Now, it appears, they – “they” being hackers – could, in principle at least, take over half-a-million Jeeps (and other Fiat-Chrysler vehicles) equipped with in-car WiFi. They’ve already done so in fact with one. According to a report just published on wired.com a guy…

Why Punish People for “Speeding”?

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Why should anyone be subject to punishment merely for driving “x” speed? Is it not of a piece with punishing someone for merely consuming alcohol? The justification usually given is that “speeding” might cause harm. Ok, sure. The same is true about drinking beer. Someone (generally) might drink beer and beat his wife. But we…

Our Muskian and Google-ized Future

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No sane person “hates” – as I have been accused of “hating”-  electric cars or self-driving cars or air bags or any other technology or device. Hating them is as irrational as hating guns. They’re all morally neutral. Tools. What irks is being force-fed electric cars, self-driving cars – and so on. It never seems to…

Bad Karma

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What if you build it – and they don’t come? Send the bill to the taxpayers! Twice. This is how you make money in the New America. Well, the green America. Don’t earn it. Steal it. The “business model” is simple enough: Glom on to a politically high-fashion issue – electric cars, for instance. Then…

Changing of Our Guards

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This weekend we celebrate the changing of our guard. Which, when you stop to think about it, is more than a little odd. Do the inmates of Rikers Island throw a party when they get a new warden? To celebrate the changing of the color of the uniforms worn by their cagers? And yet, we…