August 5, 2019

Trade War II—"Trade wars are good, and easy to win"

China is letting the yuan weaken and boycotting U.S. crops in retaliation to the Trump administration's latest round of tariffs (despite its July statement that it would not respond with competitive currency devaluation to Trump's tweets about its monetary policy). In consequence, the Dow has tumbled nearly 770 points at close today, and overnight trading in stock futures indicates the Dow is now set to fall 630 points on Tuesday, as markets are bracing for a surge in volatility. A Cowen FG analyst describes China’s central bank's decision to let the yuan fall to a more-than-10-year low against the dollar, "on a scale of 1-10, it’s an 11". Morgan Stanley predicts that if the situation escalates, a global economic recession will come in the next nine months. [more inside]
posted by Doktor Zed at 7:48 PM PST - 128 comments

The U.S. Navy's UFO Patents

The United States Navy has filed a series of patents for technologies that have a whiff of the science fictional about them. These include room temperature superconductors, a high power electromagnetic field generator, and a Hybrid Underwater Aerospace Craft craft that uses an "inertial mass reduction device" for locomotion. All of the patents are written by Salvatore Cezar Pais, who might be a real person. Does this have anything to do with the Navy's UFO sightings? (previously) (previously) [more inside]
posted by chrchr at 4:11 PM PST - 65 comments

Because We Can All Use A Little Sweet

Heading into the hottest part of the year, the folks at 24/7 Wall St have put together an essential list of the best ice cream parlor in each state, perfect for planning a sweet respite. (SL24/7 Wall St)
posted by NoxAeternum at 1:23 PM PST - 82 comments

Octopus Holdings

What can an octopus hold? [more inside]
posted by faethverity at 12:33 PM PST - 49 comments

Wild Pups Romp Again in an African Paradise

Wild dogs have returned to the famed Gorongosa National Park in Mozambique. The first puppy litters were not far behind. (slnyt) [more inside]
posted by poffin boffin at 12:06 PM PST - 17 comments

"People 55 and older have a three times higher propensity to click"

'Way ahead of the field': inside Trump's unprecedented social media campaign (Guardian) Donald Trump spent more than $11.1m on Facebook and Google ads alone in the first six months of 2019 Trump is using Facebook ads to lie about his opponents (Popular Information), Trump is using stock video of 'supporters' (Gizmodo), Donald Trump has run roughly 2,200 Facebook ads using the word 'invasion' since May 2018 (Newsweek)) [more inside]
posted by box at 11:39 AM PST - 40 comments

What ARE birds? We just don't know

The making of Look Around You, the weirdest comedy show in British TV history. (Previously)
posted by Vesihiisi at 11:08 AM PST - 58 comments

11 very short stories, mostly by women & people of colour

11 (very) short stories by diverse authors. Bustle provides a list with links to eleven excellent short stories by authors from five different countries—eight written by women and six by people of colour. Authors include Zadie Smith, Sofia Samatar, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Jamaica Kincaid, Roxane Gay, Ken Liu, Lydia Davis, Dorothy Parker, Fredric Brown, Danielle McLaughlin, and George Saunders.
posted by hurdy gurdy girl at 10:19 AM PST - 5 comments

Look for the Helpers: Third Mass Shooting Averted

On July 13, a Lubbock, TX teenager approached his grandmother. He said he had recently purchased an AK-47 and was planning to shoot up a local hotel and then commit suicide by cop. She managed to convince him to allow her to bring him to a local hospital instead, and in doing so saved untold lives (CNN) (DOJ release).
posted by WCityMike at 9:23 AM PST - 35 comments

India revokes special status for disputed Kashmir.

Citing the need to respond to a long-running insurgency in the disputed region of Indian-controlled Kashmir, India’s Hindu nationalist BJP government has followed through on a campaign promise to eliminate Article 370, the Constitutional provision that allowed for a semi-autonomous special status for the Muslim-majority region. The area is now under lockdown, with additional military troops deployed, curfews imposed, universities shuttered, internet disabled, and prohibition against the assembly of more than four people. Two of the region’s former chief ministers have been placed under house arrest.
posted by darkstar at 9:13 AM PST - 57 comments

A Bright, Blinding Dream

“My mother worked, my mother dreamed, but these alone did not afford her financial stability. The lottery is another of America’s promises for economic mobility that it has no intention of keeping. As Jonathan Cohen, a Ph.D. candidate at the University of Virginia studying Amerian lotteries, told Bloomberg last year: “I don’t think it’s a coincidence that state lotteries started emerging in the 1970s and 1980s when rates of social mobility in the traditional economy stagnated and then declined.” IT’S TIME TO GET RID OF THE LOTTERY (Outline)
posted by The Whelk at 8:21 AM PST - 60 comments

Lake Erie Jetport, the dashed dreams of an Aeronautical Disneyland

Dubbed an “Aeronautical Disneyland,” the billion-dollar proposal ultimately never left the ground. But 50 years later, [some people in] the city of Cleveland is still wondering what could have been. Remembering that time NASA wanted to build a floating airport on Lake Erie (Popular Mechanics). The closest any of the Great Lakes ever got to a floating airport was Meigs Field (Wikipedia), a single runway airport in Chicago that was in operation from December 1948 until March 2003, on Northerly Island, an artificial peninsula on Lake Michigan. [more inside]
posted by filthy light thief at 8:06 AM PST - 9 comments

Phillie Phanatic Phree Agency Phuror

The Philadelphia Phillies filed a lawsuit on Friday against the New York company that created the team’s beloved mascot, the Phillie Phanatic, after the company threatened to make the Phanatic a “free agent” if a contract signed in 1984 was not restructured. [more inside]
posted by Etrigan at 7:52 AM PST - 17 comments

free-association football

Use your mouse or your finger to fling your tiny pixelated soccer/football person goalward? ballward? skyward? backward? in A Small World Cup, a hilarious wee ludumdare 38 game by Rujo Games. (Hat tip to RPS.)
posted by cortex at 7:46 AM PST - 23 comments

We are shapeless. We can flow. We can crash.

Emerging protest tactics in Hong Kong. Antony Dapiran (City of Protest) describes the ways protestors organize against authorities, with a nod to Bruce Lee. [more inside]
posted by doctornemo at 6:48 AM PST - 32 comments

Publishers to librarians: Drop dead

After Macmillan announced plans to severely restrict lending of new eBooks (at least partly based on a fundamental misunderstanding of how public libraries work), libraries are fighting to preserve your right to borrow them (Mefi's own Jessamyn). The CEO of Overdrive also weighed in, contradicting Macmillan's claims and data.
posted by adrianhon at 6:35 AM PST - 73 comments

The Perils of Professional Dress

What women’s workwear standards reveal about our attitudes toward class, gender, and body type. Part of The Walrus' Beauty Conversation Series: [more inside]
posted by ellieBOA at 4:47 AM PST - 55 comments

reddit eyebleach

r/tinyanimalsonfingers is a small photo sub-reddit (38,000 members) of Tiny animals on fingers (SLR)
posted by growabrain at 12:43 AM PST - 7 comments

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