Ossian’s Ride

by Henry Farrell on August 14, 2019

Caragh Lake, the epicenter of the future

[Caragh Lake: the epicenter of the future]

In 1959 the famous British astronomer Fred Hoyle published his novel, Ossian’s Ride. It was the wildest science fiction, depicting a future Ireland miraculously transformed into a technological superpower. Vast highways crisscrossed the Irish countryside. The discovery of cheap contraception (manufactured from turf) broke the control of the Catholic church. A shining new city, organized around the principles of scientific discovery, was constructed on the shores of Caragh Lake in County Kerry. Britain was left on the sidelines, wondering what had happened.
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The Incarcerating Power of Stereotypical Beliefs

by Scott Page on August 14, 2019

Freeman testified at trial that Abrahams was trying to stop him and Willingham from fighting, and that she hit Willingham in the face. Willingham, Freeman testified, then raised his hand as if he was going to hit Abrahams, but then lowered it to his waist, which prompted Freeman to believe he had a gun. Freeman shot Willingham three times, according to police.

-Detroit Free Press June 20, 2019

America is very good at some things and very bad at others.  We produce a steady flow of scientific, cultural, and engineering successes– in the past five years we can lay claim to a drug that cures hepatitis C, Hamilton: The Musical, and self-driving cars.  And yet, we perform just this side of miserable at addressing core social and economic challenges.  We are among the world’s leaders in income inequality, obesity rates, drug overdose deaths, and per capita greenhouse gas emissions.  And, we rank first, that is worst, in the proportion of citizens in jail at about seven people per thousand.  Even more troubling, blacks are six times as likely as whites to be behind bars. [click to continue…]