Paper published in prestigious journal laments ‘democracy’ & calls for ‘authoritarian environmentalism

The paper’s author Ross Mittaga, calls for “authoritarian environmentalism” to address the alleged climate “emergency.” : “It is ultimately an empirical question whether authoritarian governance is better able to realize desired environmental outcomes and, if so why and to what extent? Yet, it is undeniable that nearly all wealthy democratic states have failed to respond adequately to the climate crisis. By contrast, various less affluent authoritarian regimes have been successful in implementing stringent climate policies…”  

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Looking for a safe place to change? Not at the YMCA, apparently!

Teenage Girl Tearfully Recounts Trauma of Witnessing Trans Woman’s Penis in Women’s Changing Room at California YMCA, Claims Staff Discouraged Her from Speaking Out

Looking for a safe place to change? Not at a YMCA in California, apparently!

A teenage girl in California has recounted her traumatic experience of seeing a trans woman’s penis while using the women’s changing room at the YMCA. Despite showing tears, she says staff attempted to discourage any attempts to speak out about it. It is yet another heart-breaking reminder that transgender people can face dehumanizing experiences even when they are just trying to be themselves and use basic facilities with dignity intact.

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The Peril of Politicizing Science by Anna Krylov

This article is too important not to share

There has been a worrying trend in recent years of politicians interfering with science. Rather than letting scientists and research progress objectively based on evidence, politicians have started to change results to fit their own beliefs or agendas. This has hurt many areas, including mainstream media, economics, security, and educational policy. In these cases, decision-makers have chosen biased interpretations of data over making informed decisions based on factual information.

1. The politicization of science is a dangerous trend
2. Science should be based on evidence, not ideology
3. Politicians should not interfere with scientific research
4. Science should be funded by the government, not private companies
5. Scientists should be free to pursue their research without political interference
6. The politicization of science is a threat to our democracy and our way of life

From Russia with Love: Science and Ideology Then and Now

I am sure many of you have read Orwell’s books—1984 and Animal Farm. If it has been a while, you should reread them now. You may find them much more relevant than you did 20 years ago. 

Orwell’s characters live in a dystopian reality in which control of the individual by ideology has been taken to its limit. In the USSR, we lived in such a dystopia. When I read Orwell’s books in the late 80s, I was stunned. How did he know what it was like to live in our country, the happiest and most-progressive on the planet? 

When I left the USSR in 1991, shortly after the Wall came down, I thought that the oppressions of totalitarian regimes would be a thing of the past; a story you tell your grandchildren, and they tell you, “Oh, come on, grandma, you are making this up.” I thought I would never again experience an atmosphere of ideological control, omnipresence of ideology, policing of speech and thought, suppression of dissent,  compelled speech, fear, and self-censorship.

Yet living my life as a professor of chemistry at an American university in 2021 keeps bringing back memories from my school and university time in the USSR. Not good, sweet memories—more like Orwellian nightmares.

Not everyone sees these parallels. This is not surprising. How would someone who grew up in a liberal democracy recognize the tactics and tools used by totalitarian regimes? It takes a genius like Orwell to know. 

That is why I wrote my essay, “The Peril of Politicizing Science” [1]. I wanted to bring this message to my community. And I am happy to be here and to talk about these parallels.

I have organized my remarks around four themes: 

  1. The atmosphere of fear and self-censorship;

  2. The omnipresence of ideology (examples from science);

  3. The intolerance of dissenting opinions (suppression of ideas and people, censorship, Newspeak);

  4. The use of social engineering to solve real and imagined problems.

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by Anna I. Krylov, Department of Chemistry, University of Southern California

‘Orwellian nightmares’: Professor trained in Soviet Union says U.S. universities becoming totalitarian

Chemist describes ‘an atmosphere of ideological control, omnipresence of ideology.’

Self-censorship, which Krylov (pictured) defines as “the refusal to produce, distribute, circulate or express something for fear of punishment,” is a second pandemic in American universities, she wrote.

“When I choose not to say in a faculty meeting that considering only diversity candidates for a faculty search is discriminatory because I am afraid of being ostracized, or worse — that is self-censorship,” Krylov wrote.

“This fear is experienced at all career stages from graduate student to emeritus faculty,” and it is rational, she continued. The stories of Dorian Abbot and many other canceled professors who refused to self-censor demonstrate that academics have good reason to fear dissent on diversity issues.

Even more, polls and surveys indicate high levels of self-censorship, even when the topic is not specified, Krylov wrote.

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Inventing the Crypto King

Being compared to Warren Buffett is seen as a compliment, but it can also be seen as a curse.

The root of the curse may lie in the fact that Warren Buffett displays legendary patience to let his investments mature and compound for years, a trait that is hard to come by in a frenetic market full of FOMO.  When someone like Sam Bankman-Fried shows up and starts building a multi-billion dollar fortune in a short period through crypto, what can go wrong?

How the media created the myth of Sam Bankman-Fried

Over the past two years, Bankman-Fried cultivated the media lavishly, if not carefully. Drawing on what then seemed like an unlimited pool of cash, SBF (as we’ll call the mythologized version of the real person) dispersed investments, advertising dollars, sponsorships, and donations to key news outlets—including ProPublica, Vox, Semafor, and The Intercept—with extraordinary effectiveness.

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