Sunday, August 17, 2025

Cookies



Blogger said I need to post a notice about cookies if theirs doesn't show up, to satisfy European laws. I don't see theirs on my page, maybe because of something to do with my page setup.
So here it is.
Blogger keeps cookies.
I might have apps that keep cookies, I don't know.
I do not personally keep cookies.


Monday, November 04, 2024

The structure of this blog



I have several blog posts that are at the top of my blog for extended periods of time, because I believe they are of continuing usefulness. So when you look at my blog, the fact that the first few are the same doesn't mean I haven't updated the blog recently.

Friday, May 01, 2020

Reliable and unreliable media


Links to my posts with links to reliability of various "news" web sites

Media bias chart
http://patriciashannon.blogspot.com/2018/01/media-bias-chart.html

10 Journalism Brands Where You Find Real Facts Rather Than Alternative Facts according to Forbes
http://patriciashannon.blogspot.com/2017/03/10-journalism-brands-where-you-find.html

Snopes' Field Guide to Fake News Sites and Hoax Purveyors
http://patriciashannon.blogspot.com/2016/07/snopes-field-guide-to-fake-news-sites.html

Honest Reporting
http://patriciashannon.blogspot.com/2017/03/honest-reporting.html

If You’re A Liberal, Stop Sharing Links From These Fake News Sites
http://patriciashannon.blogspot.com/2017/03/if-youre-liberal-stop-sharing-links.html

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Fact-checking sites:

https://www.snopes.com/

http://www.politifact.com/

http://factcheck.org/

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/fact-checker/

https://www.americanpressinstitute.org/category/fact-checking-project/

Tuesday, October 15, 2019

CIA spy whose cover was blown by Bush administration warns Trump over chilling effect of outing whistleblower


Given Trump's rhetoric and the attitudes and actions of some of his followers, the lives of Trump's whistleblowers might be in danger.

https://news.yahoo.com/valerie-plame-interview-070000578.html

Rozina Sabur
,The Telegraph•October 14, 2019

The whistle blower who sparked Donald Trump's impeachment inquiry will have his life turned upside down when his identity is inevitably revealed, according to a former CIA agent.

Valerie Plame, who was forced to quit her undercover role when her name was leaked by US government officials in 2003, said her "heart goes out" to the CIA operative who raised concerns about a phone call between the US president and his Ukrainian counterpart.

In his complaint, the unnamed whistleblower said multiple officials on the call had raised concerns that Mr Trump had pressured a foreign government to interfere in US elections.

Since then a second individual, who has also chosen to remain anonymous, has come forward claiming to have first hand knowledge of the allegations outlined in the original complaint.

•••••

The whistle blower who sparked Donald Trump's impeachment inquiry will have his life turned upside down when his identity is inevitably revealed, according to a former CIA agent.

Valerie Plame, who was forced to quit her undercover role when her name was leaked by US government officials in 2003, said her "heart goes out" to the CIA operative who raised concerns about a phone call between the US president and his Ukrainian counterpart.

In his complaint, the unnamed whistleblower said multiple officials on the call had raised concerns that Mr Trump had pressured a foreign government to interfere in US elections.

Since then a second individual, who has also chosen to remain anonymous, has come forward claiming to have first hand knowledge of the allegations outlined in the original complaint.

•••••

Monday, October 14, 2019

California power lines spark wildfires and prompt blackouts. Why not just bury them?



Janet Wilson, Palm Springs Desert Sun
,USA TODAY•October 12, 2019

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It costs about $3 million per mile to convert underground electric distribution lines from overhead, while the cost to build a mile of new overhead line is less than a third of that, at approximately $800,000 per mile, according to a section on PG&E's website called Facts About Undergrounding Power Lines.

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PG&E, the state's largest utility, maintains approximately 81,000 miles of overhead distribution lines and approximately 26,000 miles of underground distribution lines. It also has about 18,000 miles of larger transmission lines, the majority of which are overhead lines.

At a cost of $3 million per mile, undergrounding 81,000 miles of distribution lines would cost $243 billion. PG&E has 16 million customers; distributing that expense equally would amount to a bill of more than $15,000 per account.

•••••

Environmental concerns would also be high if thousands of miles of trenches were dug through forests or brushland habitat, Borenstein noted. Opposition could also arise from residents in existing neighborhoods confronted with the prospect of heavy-duty earth-moving projects.

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But Borenstein and others noted that problems can occur underground as well. Animals can chew buried lines or lightning can short out ground connections, just as animals can damage lines overhead, or a dry tree branch can drop. The state's extremely varied landscapes are another challenge.

•••••

Borenstein agreed that vegetation management and hardening transmission and distribution lines are better, more easily implemented alternatives than burying 100,000 miles of lines.

"That means mowing, cutting trees, perhaps replacing wooden poles with concrete poles, and all the rusted transmission towers," he said. "They're trying to do these things, but they have a huge backlog of work."

Other possible measures include insulating exposed lines or installing sensors, including cameras or devices that can detect a spark or a short and even shut down a line automatically.

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Scientists endorse mass civil disobedience to force climate action

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-climate-change-scientists/scientists-endorse-mass-civil-disobedience-to-force-climate-action-idUSKBN1WS01K

Matthew Green
Oct. 12, 2019

Almost 400 scientists have endorsed a civil disobedience campaign aimed at forcing governments to take rapid action to tackle climate change, warning that failure could inflict “incalculable human suffering.”

In a joint declaration, climate scientists, physicists, biologists, engineers and others from at least 20 countries broke with the caution traditionally associated with academia to side with peaceful protesters courting arrest from Amsterdam to Melbourne.

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“We believe that the continued governmental inaction over the climate and ecological crisis now justifies peaceful and non-violent protest and direct action, even if this goes beyond the bounds of the current law,” said Emily Grossman, a science broadcaster with a PhD in molecular biology. She read the declaration on behalf of the group.

“We therefore support those who are rising up peacefully against governments around the world that are failing to act proportionately to the scale of the crisis,” she said.

The declaration was coordinated by a group of scientists who support Extinction Rebellion, a civil disobedience campaign that formed in Britain a year ago and has since sparked offshoots in dozens of countries.

The group launched a fresh wave of international actions on Monday, aiming to get governments to address an ecological crisis caused by climate change and accelerating extinctions of plant and animal species.

•••••

While many scientists have shunned overt political debate, fearing that being perceived as activists might undermine their claims to objectivity, the 395 academics who had signed the declaration by 1100 GMT on Sunday chose to defy convention.

“The urgency of the crisis is now so great that many scientists feel, as humans, that we now have a moral duty to take radical action,” Grossman told Reuters.

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Saturday, October 12, 2019

How We Judge Others is How We Judge Ourselves

https://getpocket.com/explore/item/how-we-judge-others-is-how-we-judge-ourselves?utm_source=pocket-newtab

Mark Manson
This article was originally published on January 9, 2014, by Mark Manson

Mark Manson is the author of Everything Is F*cked: A Book About Hope.

•••••

Months ago, I wrote an article about the ways that we choose to measure the value of our own lives. Some of us measure our life through money and accolades. Others measure it through beauty and popularity. Others measure it through family and relationships. Others measure it through service and good deeds.

•••••

In that article, I wrote that it’s important to measure ourselves by our own internal metrics as much as possible. The more external our metrics for our own value and self-worth, the more we screw everything up for ourselves.

But there’s more.

The way you measure yourself is how you measure others, and how you assume others measure you.

If you measure your life by your family relationships, then you will measure others by the same standard – how close their family is to them. If they’re distant from their family or don’t call home enough, you’ll judge them as deadbeats, ungrateful or irresponsible, regardless of their lives or their history.

If you measure your life by how much fun and partying you can have, then you will measure others by the same standard – how much fun and partying they have. If they prefer to stay home and watch Star Trek: Next Generation reruns every weekend, you’ll judge them as inhibited, scared of the world, lame and soulless, regardless of their personality or needs.

•••••

The yardstick we use for ourselves is the yardstick we use for the world.

If we believe that we’re hard workers and we earned everything we have, then we will believe that everyone else earned what they have. And if they have nothing, it’s because they earned nothing.

•••••

Many of us adopt our own internal yardsticks not through conscious choice but through the shaming we’re subjected to. I love the quote, “Everyone is either trying to prove or disprove who they were in high school,” because for many of us, our yardsticks are defined by how people viewed us growing up. We develop a fixation in one area of our lives because it’s the area which we felt people judged us the most. The high school cheerleader who is afraid to lose her looks as an adult. The poor kid obsessed with becoming rich. The loser who wants to throw the biggest parties. The slacker who wants to prove to everyone how smart he is.

A big part of our development is to recognize our own fixation, to recognize how we measure ourselves and consciously choose our metric for ourselves.

But another big part of development is to recognize that everyone has their own metric. And that metric is likely not going to be the same as ours. And that’s (usually) fine. Most metrics people choose are fine. Even if they’re not the same metrics you would choose for yourself.

•••••

You may not accept a person’s ideas or behaviors.

But you must accept that you cannot change a person’s values for them. Just as we must choose our own measurement by ourselves and for ourselves. They must do it by themselves and for themselves.

Friday, October 11, 2019

George Conway, other conservative lawyers say Trump's acts 'threaten our democracy'

https://news.yahoo.com/george-conway-other-conservative-lawyers-165426058.html

William Cummings, USA TODAY
,USA TODAY•October 10, 2019

A group of 16 prominent conservative lawyers that includes George Conway, husband to White House counselor Kellyanne Conway, issued a statement Thursday that said President Donald Trump's "factually undisputed" requests for foreign governments to investigate his political opponents pose a threat to American democracy.

"In the past several weeks, it has become clear to any observer of current events that the president is abusing the office of the presidency for personal political objectives," they said.

The statement was signed by the co-founders of Checks and Balances, which calls itself a group of "conservative and libertarian lawyers standing up for the rule of law."

•••••

How Poor Americans Get Exploited by Their Landlords



Richard Florida
This article was originally published on March 21, 2019, by CityLab

Do the poor pay more for housing?

That’s the question at the heart, and in the title, of a detailed paper published in the American Journal of Sociology on the actual housing costs paid by Americans in low-income urban neighborhoods. Its two authors, Princeton’s Matthew Desmond—who wrote the award-winning 2016 book Evicted—and MIT’s Nathan Wilmers, track the rent burdens and levels of exploitation faced by those living in concentrated poverty. They also uncover the staggeringly high profit margins made by the landlords who own properties in these areas.

•••••

Ultimately, they find consistent evidence that the poor, and especially the minority poor, experience the highest rates of housing exploitation. In their most basic formulations, they find that renters in high-poverty neighborhoods experience levels of exploitation that are more than double those of renters in neighborhoods with lower levels of poverty. Neighborhoods with a poverty rate of less than 15 percent have an exploitation rate of 10 percent—meaning that rents cover 10 percent of the actual cost of that housing. (In other words, the actual cost of that rental housing can be paid off in 10 years.) But in high-poverty neighborhoods, those where 50 to 60 percent of residents live in poverty, the exploitation rate is 25 percent, meaning that 25 percent of the value of the property is paid back in a single year of rent.

The housing-exploitation rate is also higher in majority-black neighborhoods (20 to 25 percent) compared to minority-black neighborhoods (10 to 15 percent). These results are backed up by the study’s more high-powered statistical models.

•••••

Nationally, landlords in poor neighborhoods derive a median profit of $298 monthly, compared with $225 in middle-class neighborhoods and $250 in affluent ones. In Milwaukee, the profit differential is even greater, with landlords in poor neighborhoods raking in $319 per month, more than double the profit ($174 per month) of landlords with properties in non-poor neighborhoods.

And the same basic pattern holds when expenses including maintenance and repairs are factored in. Across the nation, landlords with units in poor neighborhoods average nearly $100 a month in net profit, compared to about $50 in affluent neighborhoods, and just $3 in middle-class areas. In Milwaukee, landlords again do even better, taking home about $150 per month, compared to roughly $20 a month in non-poor neighborhoods.

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