Shared posts

19 Nov 02:23

The US government turned down Anne Frank's visa application

by Cory Doctorow


Otto Frank sought help from his college friend Nathan Strauss Jr, the son of the owner of Macy's, to get a US visa, but the US State Department turned him and his family down. (more…)

17 Nov 04:30

Open Thread - Tweet Of The Day

by Bluegal aka Fran
Open Thread - Tweet Of The Day

Via @OWillis, who also tweeted, "why that is right jennifer aniston and kerry washington, i DID have a tweet go viral"

Open thread below...

15 Nov 16:35

Brother Of Paris Victim Worries 'We'll Make The Same Mistake As When The U.S. Was Attacked'

by David
Brother Of Paris Victim Worries 'We'll Make The Same Mistake As When The U.S. Was Attacked'

The brother of a woman killed during the terrorist attacks in Paris said over the weekend that he hoped authorities would not respond to violence with violence as the United States had done after the attacks on Sept. 11, 2001.

Alexis Breuil, 26, told Time magazine that his family found out from a friend that his 23-year-old sister, Elodie, had been killed while an Eagles of Death Metal concert.

The friend, who wished to remain anonymous, overheard one of the gunman say that the attacks were “for everything that’s happening in Syria.”

“Can you imagine?” Breuil lamented to the magazine. “One day you’re just a happy teenager, playing video games. The next you’re laying in a pool of blood with corpses all around you.”

“I understand the anger. I’m not angry. Maybe I will be, but I’m not right now,” Breuil continued. "I worry that we’ll make the same mistake as before, when the U.S. was attacked, by responding to violence with violence."

Elodie's brother hoped that authorities would "show the other cheek."

"Instead of responding with violent acts we have to understand what is the cause of the problem and work together to try and prevent it," Breuil said, adding a Bible verse from Mathew 5:39: “But I say to you, do not resist an evil person; but whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also.”

Breuil noted, however, that he believed religion was part of the problem.

read more

06 Nov 19:00

How to easily search the text of the Trans-Pacific Partnership for bullshit

by Rob Beschizza


The Trans-Pacific Partnership is a very long, legalistic proposed treaty full of paid-for corporate graft. The Washington Post has made it easy to search, lest its inaccessibility dissuade scrutiny (which seems unlikely, though anything that makes it accessible to laypeople will annoy the right people)

06 Nov 17:16

Want to Find Yourself? Try Playing Dungeons & Dragons.

by Natalie Shoemaker

Coates describes how D&D gave him an appreciation for descriptive language

Role for insight.

Read More
05 Nov 22:16

Dinkel River

Dinkel River

03 Nov 18:30

This Video Perfectly Points Out the Issue With Media Coverage of Female Athletes, By Treating Male Athletes the Same

Submitted by: (via CoverTheAthlete)

Tagged: gender , sexism , Media , Video , win
03 Nov 10:34

Citizen Maths: free/open adult math education for practical real-world numeracy

by Seb Schmoller
26 Oct 17:40

After CEO Raised Minimum Salary To $70,000, Revenue Doubled

by Susie Madrak
After CEO Raised Minimum Salary To $70,000, Revenue Doubled

Remember this guy? I'm glad it all worked out, because it was a good thing to try:

In April, Dan Price, CEO of the credit card payment processor Gravity Payments, announced that he will eventually raise minimum pay for all employees to at least $70,000 a year.

The move sparked not just a firestorm of media attention, but also a lawsuit from Price’s brother and co-founder Lucas, claiming that the pay raise violated his rights as a minority shareholder.

But six months later, the financial results are starting to come in: Price told Inc. Magazine that revenue is now growing at double the rate before the raises began and profits have also doubled since then.

On top of that, while it lost a few customers in the kerfuffle, the company’s customer retention rate rose from 91 to 95 percent, and only two employees quit. Two weeks after he made the initial announcement, the company was flooded with 4,500 resumes and new customer inquiries jumped from 30 a month to 2,000 a month.

read more

18 Oct 07:01

The Fourth Film by Matta Napkin

by Matta
29 Sep 19:00

Tony Benn's Ten-Minute History Lesson on Neoliberalism, by @Gaius_Publius

by (Gaius Publius)
Tony Benn's Ten-Minute History Lesson on Neoliberalism

by Gaius Publius

I had a different group of pieces I've been working on recently, revolving around a recent interview by Noam Chomsky that touches on our so-called "capitalism" and also on the Bernie Sanders candidacy. But this video sets that up nicely. It's a ten-minute speech by long-time British politico and Labour Party member Tony Benn, sadly recently deceased.

Our thanks to the people at Naked Capitalism for bringing this to our attention. There it's presented without comment. I'd like to print some of the text, just to emphasize some of its points.

First the video. (I've bumped the start to about two minutes in, but you can back it up if you like.)

And now from a self-made transcript. You've seen all of these points before, but to see them assembled and rounded back to where it all begins is quite striking. My emphasis below:

This country and the world have been run by rich and powerful men from the beginning of time. ... The only real wealth in the world is land, and resources that lie under it, and the people. ...

In 1834, only 2% had the right to vote ... Out of trade unionism came the change ....

The [20th century] slumps were not acts of god ... but a direct result of too much economic power in the hands of too few men who behaved like a totalitarian oligarchy in the heart of our democratic state. The had and they felt no responsibility to the nation. ...

In wartime there are no economic arguments at all. I've never heard a general say, "I can't bomb Baghdad this month because I've exceeded my budget." In wartime you do whatever is required. We should adopt the principle that in peacetime you do whatever is required. People want jobs, they want homes, want a decent income, a good education, health care ...

When you come to the Thatcher period, this is what's so interesting. Thatcher was a much cleverer woman than we give her credit for. She knew perfectly well the strength of the labor movement lay in three sources of power. One was the trade union movement. So she took on the miners ...

What she said, and this is very clever, "You can buy your council house so you'll be a property owner. You may not be able to get a wage increase, but you can borrow." And the borrowing was deliberately encouraged because people in debt are slaves to their employers. That's how the whole thing began. The borrowing was a deliberate policy ...

She also attacked local government ... Local councilors now are agents of the Treasury. They can only spend money the Treasury give them on things the Treasury tells them they can spend it on. ...

And she attacked the public sector and privatized it. And this privatization is international. I met an old friend of mine, Kenneth Kaunda, the president of Zambia. ... He said, "We had a great debt and the IMF came along and said, 'We'll lift your debt if you sell off all your schools and hospitals to multinational corporations.'"

So privatization is a deliberate policy, along with the destruction of local democracy and the destruction of the trade unions to restore power back to to where it was. And what we're now back in, that's what the whole crisis is about, the restoration of power to those who've always controlled the world, the people who own the land and the resources and all the rest of it. And that is something we need to understand. ...

There's more in the speech besides just this. Check out his action as Postmaster (at 8:00). And his plan for the banks. And his statement about how popular his ideas are among actual voters. (Reminds us that Sanders has the same wind at his back; actual wishes of the people.)

There really is only one story in this country — the "flow of funds" story, the massive passing of money to the rich from everyone else. Whatever else we've been made to suffer, and are going to be made to suffer, comes from that one story. With that in mind, I'd like to close where Benn closes, and to ask you to return to these comments as we consider Noam Chomsky's remarks later in the week.

It's very important to keep optimism. ... Progress has always been made by two flames burning in the human heart. The flame of anger at injustice. And the flame of hope you can build a better world.
Exactly. We'll come back to this when we turn to the Chomsky interview.

(A version of this piece appeared at Down With Tyranny. GP article archive here.)


29 Apr 21:24

Baltimore Man Lets Geraldo Have It Over Fox News Coverage

by Susie Madrak
Baltimore Man Lets Geraldo Have It Over Fox News Coverage

Watch the video, it's great. Geraldo, as usual, is exaggerating his own importance:

The situation heightened when one protestor stepped in front of the camera and Rivera tried to move him out of the way.

"Don't touch me!" the protester shouted.

"Stop blocking my camera!" Rivera yelled back.

Protesters can be heard in the background screaming that Fox News "lies" and accusing the network of "making money off of black pain."\

[...] Rivera commented on the incident Wednesday morning, telling "Fox & Friends" that the protester he argued with was being "truly annoying and obstructionist."

"I had an important story to tell standing there," he said. "It’s exactly that kind of youthful anarchy that led to the destruction and pain in that community.”

28 Apr 19:29

Baltimore gang members call bullshit on police reports that gangs called truce to kill cops

by Xeni Jardin

Baltimore members of the Black Guerrilla Family, the Bloods and the Crips talk to a Baltimore TV news reporter, and say they did not make a truce so that they could unite and harm police officers. (more…)

28 Apr 18:25

One guy in Baltimore's thoughts on Baltimore riots

by Xeni Jardin

I get the anger that drives the violence, but this was really well said.

Maurice Kane Carter: “I am all for fucking shit up if it gets us closer to a solution.”

[via] (more…)

03 Apr 18:40

64 horrible things about the Internet

by Mark Frauenfelder

That sentence is the best thing I read all day.

"iTunes is like having your hand held by a robot who wants to walk into the ocean and die." How very true these feel. Read the rest
30 Mar 16:00

Down with April Fools' Day

by Mark Frauenfelder

John Oliver hates April Fools' Day. I agree with him. I propose we turn April 1 into "April Friendly Day," and delight friends and strangers with wonderful things.

17 Mar 06:33

Playing the unplayable Death March (but not releasing the penguins)

by Cory Doctorow

John Stump's 1980 composition Faerie’s Aire and Death Waltz (from 'A Tribute to Zdenko G. Fibich') is a parody of a composition and not intended to be played -- but someone did! Read the rest

27 Oct 02:00


29 Jul 16:07

How to cut a bagel into two interlocking rings

by Maggie Koerth-Baker

Screen Shot 2014-07-29 at 12.04.00 PM

You will need a knife, a non-toxic marker, and some math.

16 Jul 19:49

explore-blog: More timeless truth from Anaïs Nin

16 Jul 21:11

ahhhhbree: r.m. drake


r.m. drake

15 Jul 05:00

#1046; A Soft Definition of Hacking

by David Malki

finding yourself in possession of both a series of unbagged bagels AND a stack of old CD spindles is a sign that matters may have progressed beyond the power of a 'hack' to solve

09 Jul 01:58

nevver: Errol Morris

11 Jul 17:18

The City’s a Playground for Cartoon Characters by OakOak

by Steph
[ By Steph in Art & Street Art & Graffiti. ]

oakoak urban interventions 1

Anything from a crooked cinder block to an ephemeral beam of light falling across the street can inspire a playful interactive scene by French street artist OakOak, making passersby stop and smile. Whether by temporary paper cut-outs or more permanent graffiti, the artist transforms ordinary urban settings in fun and unexpected ways.

oakoak urban interventions 2

oakoak urban interventions 3

OakOak wanders the streets seeing creative possibilities in virtually every quirk and imperfection, turning what could be seen by others as urban blight into playful works of art that might only stick around for a day or so, but still manage to brighten people’s day.

oakoak urban interventions 4

oakoak urban interventions 5

oakoak urban interventions 9

Little Bruce Lee figures bend metal poles or break through concrete and trapeze artists prepare to tightrope across chains. A stain on a wall might become a stream of genie-producing smoke emitted from a magic lamp, or a sewer grate could become a snail shell.

oakoak urban interventions 6

oakoak urban interventions 8

Says OakOak of his hometown of St. Etienne, “I like this city, her atmosphere, and I wanted it to look nicer. It was an industrial city with many coal mines; now it’s in regeneration and still quite poor. But it’s easily travelled by foot with awkward aspects ideal for art. I saw shapes everywhere, and wanted to realize them.”

Want More? Click for Great Related Content on WebUrbanist:

The City is a Playground: 15 Interactive Installations

Art installations that invite or even dare passersby to join in on a fun activity transform even the most stiff and boring urban environments into public ... Click Here to Read More »»

Graffiti Lettering: Cool Characters, Alphabets & Fonts

It's impossible to give names to all of the lettering styles graffiti artists use. But there are a few well-known alphabets that are seen over and over. Click Here to Read More »»

The Wilds of Panama City: New Street Art Animals by ROA

Street artist ROA brings bold black-and-white animals measuring three stories in height to the gritty streets of Panama City in a new series of work. Click Here to Read More »»

Share on Facebook

[ By Steph in Art & Street Art & Graffiti. ]

[ WebUrbanist | Archives | Galleries | Privacy | TOS ]

11 Jul 21:30

If Google were a guy (video)

by John Aravosis

From the College Humor guys, a look at what life would be like if Google were a real person.

And the subjunctive never existed.


Follow @aravosis
NOTE FROM JOHN: I know I say this a lot, but I’m not kidding, we need your help sharing our content on social media if we’re going to keep AMERICAblog alive. Please share our stories, which brings us visitors, and helps us earn more ad revenue.” Thanks for your help. JOHN
07 Jul 02:19

Tumblr | f42.jpg

04 Jul 03:00

A kitten aboard a floating Victoria water lily pad in the...

A kitten aboard a floating Victoria water lily pad in the Philippines, 1935.Photograph by Alfred T. Palmer, National Geographic Creative

25 Jun 09:51

Instant câlin

(Source + merci à Robin pour la suggestion)

03 Jul 20:41

I couldn't figure out this optical illusion painting until the very end

by Mark Frauenfelder

"Found at Gallery at Ice in Windsor, UK painted by Brian Weavers."

02 Jul 00:00

Surface Area

This isn't an informational illustration; this is a thing I think we should do. First, we'll need a gigantic spool of thread. Next, we'll need some kind of ... hmm, time to head to Seattle.