Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. Do These Idiots Know What They’re Doing?

 

Yep, there are politicians who think we should tax robots which replace workers to make up for lost taxes. Here’s a pull quote:

“A robot that replaces a factory worker who produces say, $50,000 of work annually, should be taxed at the same level to offset losses in income and Social Security taxes, [Bill] Gates calculates.”

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America welcome a decision from the 8th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that strongly boosts the freedom of conscience in a culture that often wants to crush any departure from liberal groupthink. They also take a wait and see approach as media outlets fret about […]

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Here’s another megalomania of mine: every American who owns arable land, in any quantity, shall be able to farm it, profitably. If plants will grow on your land, you can harvest and sell those plants. Not only that, but you can do that at almost any point within your growing season. How can that be? […]

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We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard.   More

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America discuss polling revealing 51 percent of Americans support ICE deportation raids compared to just 35 percent who are opposed. They once again dive into the controversy involving Donald Trump, Ilhan Omar and theTrump rally chants of “send her back.” And they shake their heads […]

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As computer technology became more advanced, so did the capability to digitally alter photos to the point they could become no longer deemed evidence in court (IMHO). Now we are at the point where video can be “faked” with computer-generated people indistinguishable from real folks. Two games I’m currently playing, Fallout 4 and Assassin’s Creed […]

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Well, neutral observer and I just got back home. We were vacationing not in the Dominican Republic, but in Tullahoma, Tennessee visiting friends. Sure, there was a tornado warning one night, but at least we didn’t get beat up or poisoned. Anyway, our hosts took us to visit the Beechcraft Heritage Museum (https://beechcrafthm.org/) where we […]

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I think it’s a phrase mostly used in the UK (especially with the first word spelled the way it is, so please don’t “fix” it), but it’s certainly applicable here. Here’s the definition from The Cambridge Dictionary: “To be unable to choose because there are so many possible good choices.” So. “Bill Gates reveals the […]

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Don’t Ruin the Internet Over Flukey ‘Bias’ Incidents Like the One on Pinterest

 

What passes for “evidence” of Big Tech bias against the right tends to be of the anecdotal variety. A piece of content gets blocked or hidden. An account gets suspended or banned. And then conservative media goes crazy, charging that Silicon Valley is suppressing conservative thought and thinkers.

The latest controversy involves a Pinterest employee sending a series of internal documents to the right-wing political website Project Veritas. The documents supposedly prove flagrant discrimination against pro-life groups and religious conservatives. This whistleblower claims the documents show that Liveaction.org — a pro-life informational website with more than 3 million followers on social media — was unfairly added to a domain blacklist reserved for porn domains, which are prevented from being pinned by Pinterest.

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David French of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America discuss Harvard’s decision to rescind the admittance of Kyle Kashuv, a Parkland shooting survivor and conservative, for controversial past statements. They analyze the general misinformation and public ignorance about Medicare-for-All. And for today’s crazy martini, they discuss O.J. Simpson joining the Twittersphere. More

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Promoted from the Ricochet Member Feed by Editors Created with Sketch. Trump Plans to Live-Tweet Dem Debates

 

Trump’s favorite bully pulpit is his iPhone and he’s ready to pound it for the first primary debates of his Democratic opponents. From the Wall Street Journal:

The president, who has spent years embracing social media for his political advantage, is tentatively planning to live-tweet the debates on June 26-27, according to people familiar with the planning.

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Jim Geraghty of National Review and Greg Corombos of Radio America praise Texas Governor Greg Abbott for a series of conservative legislative victories. They also react as YouTube admits it is suppressing what it deems “borderline” content. And in a double crazy martini, they discuss Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (literally) running from Republican competition while reportedly entertaining […]

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The Women’s World Cup is back in action… now with robots! Well, not really. But the players do commonly wear GPS trackers and heart rate monitors. “Manage Player Outputs”, the SPT device ad says. If algorithms don’t already analyze patterns of player activity, stay tuned.  More

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Does anybody remember switchgrass? For roughly fifteen minutes roughly fifteen years ago, it was A Thing. And when the history of the 21st century is written, it will have Things. In such a history, switchgrass will be a footnote. On one page there will be something like “Very shortly before wealthy nations decided that (1) […]

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Recommended by Ricochet Members Created with Sketch. I Cut the Cord

 

After threatening to do so for the better part of a year, I finally cut the cord yesterday. I mostly held on this long because of sports. With the exception of a few programs I watch with the girlfriend, or in some cases drink scotch and tolerate, all I watch is sports. I had an irrational fear that I would miss coverage of The Masters, US Open, or football. I should also mention my dog Norman watches The Golf Channel all day while I am at work. So I spent numerous mornings researching and became convinced Hulu Live was the right mix.

Still, I did not make the move. I decided I would downgrade to basic cable first — incrementalism people! I logged into my cable account where I was promptly asked if I wanted to upgrade with HBO. I then looked for how to change my services — it was nowhere to be found. They were ready and willing with a “team member” available to chat if I wanted to upgrade. So, I clicked yes, assuming if they could add services they could also take services away. Wrong. “That is not my department.”

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This week my guest is the person who deserves to be known as the Robert Caro of energy history—Robert L. Bradley Jr. Rob is the founder of the Institute for Energy Research, one of the best go-to sources for information and analysis about energy (and especially debunking the nonsense energy romanticism of the left), but […]

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Judge Koh Is No 5G Wiz

 

Judge Lucy Koh of the Northern District of California gave the Federal Trade Commission an enormous victory this past week in its antitrust lawsuit against Qualcomm. Her conclusion was that “Qualcomm’s licensing practices have strangled competition” in key markets to the detriment of rivals, original equipment manufacturers (OEMs), and consumers.

Her solution was a stern edict that at a minimum forces Qualcomm to abandon its “no-license, no chip” policy in three key ways. First, as that label suggests, Qualcomm may no longer sell its chips only to parties who have already obtained a license—perfectly proper under patent law—to use chips that contain Qualcomm’s patented technology. Second, Qualcomm must renegotiate all of its contracts worldwide to make sure that it only charges “fair and reasonable rates” for all of its technology and chipsets, including now required sales to its direct competitors in the 5G market. Third, the order prohibits Qualcomm from entering into “any express or de facto exclusive dealing relationships” with its customers. As the Wall Street Journal wrote, Judge Koh’s “Qualcomm coup” effectively “kneecaps” the major American player in the 5G market.

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The era of free lunches is over, at least in the tech industry. For decades Big Tech has relied on exponential growth in computing power to compensate for deficiencies in everything from management practices to programmer training. But no longer. The end of Moore’s law (the observation that transistor density tended to double every two […]

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Contributor Post Created with Sketch. Why America’s Social Media Firms Aren’t ‘Parasites’

 

It’s hard to be a big tech company these days without somebody rooting for your demise. But some cases are a bit more understandable than others. Like this one: “Bannon says killing Huawei more important than trade deal with China.” I mean, I get it. Former Trump White House adviser and nationalist Steve Bannon wants America to launch and win a Tech Cold War against China. Taking an ax to what might be its most important tech company, a key player in the global 5G rollout, might be a big step forward in such a plan.

But it’s not Americans wanting to shut down just Chinese tech companies. Sometimes it’s Americans going after American firms. “Maybe we’d be better off if Facebook disappeared,” writes Sen. Josh Hawley, a Missouri Republican, in an op-ed for USA Today. And his problem isn’t just with the social media giant run by Mark Zuckerberg. According to Hawley, Twitter and Instagram, though oddly not YouTube, are also “best understood as a parasite on productive investment, on meaningful relationships, on a healthy society,” He claims they’ve created an “addiction economy” based on extracting and selling data gleaned from uninformed users. The first sentence of the piece: “Social media consumers are getting wise to the joke that when the product is free, they’re the ones being sold.”

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