• Daily Digest

    Daily Digest 12/10 – The Taxonomy Of Collapse, The Rise and Fall of Facts

    by Daily Digest

    Tuesday, December 10, 2019, 7:42 AM


Economy

This Was The Decade Drug Overdoses Killed Nearly Half A Million Americans (tmn)

“Ten years ago people did not recognize substance use disorders as a disease,” said drug policy expert Beth Connolly of the Pew Charitable Trusts, who studies public opinion about drug abuse. “A lot of people really thought of it as a moral failure.”

That shifted after the opioid epidemic. More than 85% of Americans in urban, suburban, or rural counties see drug addiction as a serious problem in their community, according to a 2018 Pew survey.

Afghanistan suffers record 4,300 civilian casualties in three months: U.N. (TS)

Taliban insurgents fighting the U.S.-backed Kabul government control more of Afghanistan than at any time since being ousted from power nearly two decades ago.

They have stepped up a campaign of suicide bombings in recent years as Washington tries to pull its forces out.

Charles Hugh Smith: The Taxonomy Of Collapse (Nate)

These triggers of collapse can overlap, of course, accelerating the final decline. All complex hierarchical systems are intrinsically fragile and prone to disruption; we don’t see the fragility or vulnerabilities until the decline has reached the terminal phase. The higher up the wealth-power pyramid the observer is, the more prone they are to a magical-thinking belief that the empire is forever, even as it is crumbling around them.

A 5,000-Year-Old Plan to Erase Debts Is Now a Hot Topic in America (jdargis)

In ancient Babylon, a newly enthroned king would declare a jubilee, wiping out the population’s debts. In modern America, a faint echo of that idea — call it jubilee-lite — is catching on.

The Rise and Fall of Facts (tmn)

Facts sped up the rate at which news could be produced and consumed. This was a double-edged sword, since it led to an increased fear of “honest inaccuracies,” as Ralph Pulitzer, publisher of the New York World, explained in an address at Columbia University in 1912. Soon after, the World established its Bureau of Accuracy and Fair Play in an effort to reduce the number of errors in an increasingly complicated system of correspondents, writers, editors, and layout editors. Its work was mostly retroactive, focusing on catching deliberate fakery and printing apologies rather than fact-checking material before it went to print.

The Culpeper Minutemen Flag: The History of the Banner Flown by a Militia of Patriots (Alex)

While many of the Revolutionary War flags flown by Patriots today have dubious origins, the Culpeper Flag is one of the few banners that we know for certain was flown by Patriots during the Revolutionary period. It also offers a succinct statement of the values of the American nation: Liberty or Death – and a stern warning to those who would threaten our liberty.

The species the world lost this decade (tmn)

A few years ago, a team of researchers in Europe wanted to figure out the answer to a simple question: How long would it take for evolution to replace the 300 mammal species that have gone extinct in the time humans have walked the earth? Their answer: 3 to 7 million years. We have already caused damage that may last longer than us. And that’s just the mammals.

Low Carbon Life: The Truth About Heating and Cooking with a Wood Stove (Kara S.)

First of all, wood stoves are not an automatic environmental impact win. You should know that right up front (more about it later). We always consider environmental impact when we choose but we also take into account other things: comfort, safety, labor commitment and especially resilience. Our wood stove was chosen mainly for resilience.

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