Sunday 11.20.2016 New York Times Digest

(Note: This post is “late” because I was traveling [see article #1]. But now I’m back in Iowa City [see article #2] and getting caught up on things. Thanks for your patience and look for another one of these on Sunday.)


1. I Wish We All Could Be Californian

“Nearly everyone I know would vote yes tomorrow if we could secede peacefully and get security guarantees while we annex Oregon and Washington, join the Canadian health care system and claim Brooklyn in the same way that West Germany once claimed West Berlin.”

2. At Iowa High School, Election Results Kindle Tensions and Protests

“Like many other schools around the country since the election, West High has become a microcosm of the United States itself, a place roiled by tension, divisions and mistrust. Students in many schools say supporters of Donald J. Trump have felt empowered to lash out at minorities, while outraged backers of Hillary Clinton have been spurred to organize and demonstrate. And teachers have been struggling to provide guidance even as they themselves are processing the election results.”

3. Along the Autism Spectrum, a Path Through Campus Life

“For decades, universities have provided academic safety nets to students with physical disabilities and learning challenges like dyslexia. But students on the autism spectrum need a web of support that is far more nuanced and complex.”

4. Quit Social Media. Your Career May Depend on It.

“A dedication to cultivating your social media brand is a fundamentally passive approach to professional advancement. It diverts your time and attention away from producing work that matters and toward convincing the world that you matter.”

5. The End of Identity Liberalism

“National politics in healthy periods is not about ‘difference,’ it is about commonality. And it will be dominated by whoever best captures Americans’ imaginations about our shared destiny.”

6. Climate Change in Trump’s Age of Ignorance

“We now live in a world where ignorance of a very dangerous sort is being deliberately manufactured, to protect certain kinds of unfettered corporate enterprise.”

7. The Secret Agenda of a Facebook Quiz

“For several years, a data firm eventually hired by the Trump campaign, Cambridge Analytica, has been using Facebook as a tool to build psychological profiles that represent some 230 million adult Americans.”

8. ‘Westworld’ and the Moral Dilemma of Cyborgs

“The father of cybernetics cautioned human beings against the desire to be waited upon by intelligent machines that are equipped to improve their minds over time. ‘We wish a slave to be intelligent, to be able to assist us in the carrying out of our tasks,’ Wiener writes. ‘However, we also wish him to be subservient.’ The obvious problem is that keen intelligence and groveling submission do not go hand in hand.”

9. The Crisis for Liberalism

“Liberal societies have always depended on an illiberal or pre-liberal substructure to answer the varied human needs — meaning, belonging, a vertical dimension to human life, a hope against mortality.”

10. Dancing in a Hurricane

“What the hell happened in and around 2007? 2007? That’s such an innocuous year. But look again.”

11. Race in America After the Great Migration

“A century ago, almost all black Americans lived in the South, largely in rural areas. By 1970, most lived outside the South, a great many in Northern and Western industrial cities. Driven, in part, by hopes for greater economic opportunity, millions of black migrants made this move. Did they find what they were looking for?”


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