If you wanna do crimes, make them incredibly complicated and technical. Like the hustlers that came into the bookstore I worked at and spun these long-ass stories about why they needed money for a Greyhound ticket home.
Those guys shoulda studied the private equity sector.
Private equity’s playbook is to borrow giant sums by putting up other peoples’ companies as collateral (yes, really). Then they use that money to buy the company they mortgaged, and pay themselves a huge dividend.
Then they sell off the company’s assets and pay themselves even more money. That leaves the company in a state…
#20yrsago Laid-off tech-workers crowd San Francisco homeless shelters https://memex.craphound.com/2001/06/15/laid-off-sysadmins-and-other/
#15yrsago PirateBay hides anti-MPAA taunt in DNS https://web.archive.org/web/20060904114045/http://hackingthemainframe.com/smf/index.php?PHPSESSID=94828ac4e02399d0b8f7586f1bff09fc&action=dlattach;topic=6217.0;id=253
#15yrsago Why Apple is to blame for iTunes DRM https://web.archive.org/web/20060620004534/http://vitanuova.loyalty.org/NewsBruiser-2.6.1/nb.cgi/view/vitanuova/2006/06/15/1
#15yrsago Jim Baen, science fiction publisher, has had a serious stroke http://nielsenhayden.com/makinglight/archives/007658.html#007658
#10yrsago Rotters: YA horror novel about grave-robbing chills, thrills, delights https://memex.craphound.com/2011/06/15/rotters-ya-horror-novel-about-grave-robbing-chills-thrills-delights/
#10yrsago French proposal: any URL to be arbitrarily blacklisted without due process https://www.laquadrature.net/en/2011/06/15/the-entire-internet-under-governmental-censorship-in-france/…
The infrastructure bills are working their way through Congress, and Republicans are indiscriminately blocking them. Take the surface transportation bills: $547b over five years, that passed with only one GOP vote in favor.
That might seem like a lot, but it’s just a re-authorization of existing spending. It doesn’t authorize a single cent of new maintenance and upkeep — it just continues the existing level of spending. Without it, America would stop maintaining its infrastructure altogether.
In other words, the entire GOP caucus (except Brian Fitzpatrick, R-PA) voted to zero out America’s infrastructure maintenance programs for the next five years.
#20yrsago ORBS spam blocklist goes dark https://web.archive.org/web/20010618061402/https://www.salon.com/tech/feature/2001/06/08/orbs/index.html
#10yrsago WIPO boss: fair use is a “negative agenda,” rights for blind people are a distraction, let’s make more copyright! https://memex.craphound.com/2011/06/14/head-of-un-copyright-agency-says-fair-use-is-a-negative-agenda-wants-to-get-rid-of-discussions-on-rights-for-blind-people-and-go-back-to-giving-privileges-to-giant-companies/
#5yrsago Steeplejack: diverse YA fantasy driven by expert plotting https://memex.craphound.com/2016/06/14/steeplejack-diverse-ya-fantasy-driven-by-expert-plotting/
#5yrsago Appeals court: FCC has jurisdiction to impose net neutrality on ISPs https://www.vice.com/en/article/8q85n4/net-neutrality-appeals-court
#5yrsago Cable industry wants you to know that competition is bad for its customers https://www.techdirt.com/articles/20160610/08243434680/cable-industry-proclaims-more-competition-hurts-consumers-damages-economic-efficiency.shtml…
A podcast of my Medium column on the long con of asset appreciation.
This week on my podcast, I read my Medium column “The Rent’s Too Damned High,” an essay about the economic incoherence of making home-ownership the path to economic security and a middle-class life.
Obviously, home-ownership does allow for intergenerational wealth accumulation (simply compare the wealth accumulation gap between Black families who were excluded from home subsidies like the GI Bill and white families who weren’t), but that’s not the whole story.
Owning a home is a good way to insulate yourself from a landlord’s whims and…
If you do much reading about antitrust, you’re sure to come across Ida Tarbell, the campaigning investigative journalist whose masterful 1904 book, The History of the Standard Oil Company (free ebook, free audiobook), brought down John D. Rockefeller and his monopolistic Standard Oil Company, which was broken up in 1911. It split into seven companies, many of which are still with us—or were, until recent mergers (think: Exxon, Mobil, Esso, Chevron, Texaco, and Amoco).
After repeatedly reading about Tarbell’s remarkable work, I decided I should read it for myself. I’d just finished Amy Klobuchar’s somewhat overlong Antitrust (do yourself a…
One of the weird ironies of living in the US and having family, friends and colleagues abroad is the vast, iniquitous gap in vaccine availability based on where you live, and, more particularly, whether you live in a poor country or a rich one.
Vaccine Apartheid is a global terror and horror, but that’s not the “ironic” part. That would be the American vaccine deniers who have effectively killed the dream of herd immunity, and taken anti-vax from a threat to public health to a threat to civilization itself.
The way this manifests is often quirky and personal — like…
#20yrsago Nerve interviews Samuel R Delany https://web.archive.org/web/20010802205617/https://www.nerve.com/Dispatches/Westerfeld/SpaceCowboy/
#20yrsago Disney workers’ union wins right to wear your own underwear under full-body costumes https://web.archive.org/web/20020228125231/http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/news/archive/2001/06/07/state1339EDT0171.DTL
#10yrsago A dog with persistence-of-vision LEDs in her shirt writes my novel Makers in the park at night https://web.archive.org/web/20110618011346/http://i.document.m05.de/?p=970
#10yrsago My head is a 3D scan https://www.makerbot.com/stories/news/new-york-notables-party-this-thursday-june-30th/
#5yrsago Microsoft will buy Linkedin for $26.2B https://arstechnica.com/information-technology/2016/06/microsoft-will-acquire-linkedin-for-18-5b/
#5yrsago Rio: your quadrennial reminder that the Olympics colonize host-states with Orwellian surveillance and human rights abuses https://www.vice.com/en/article/wnxgpw/the-olympics-are-turning-rio-into-a-military-state…
#15yrsago Images from anti-DRM protest at the San Fran Apple Store https://www.flickr.com/photos/quinn/tags/drmprotest/
#10yrsago Reasons people were arrested at the Toronto G20 https://memex.craphound.com/2011/06/11/reasons-people-were-arrested-at-the-toronto-g20/
#10yrsago Ontario publicly funded Catholic school bans rainbows, appropriates student donations for LGBT cause and gives them to Catholic charity https://web.archive.org/web/20110610125236/http://www.xtra.ca/public/Toronto/Rainbows_banned_at_Mississauga_Catholic_school-10262.aspx
#5yrsago Mounties used Stingrays to secretly surveil millions of Canadians for years https://www.vice.com/en/article/kb73an/the-rcmp-surveilled-thousands-of-innocent-canadians-for-a-decade
#5yrsago How to be less wrong about the First Amendment https://www.popehat.com/2016/06/11/hello-youve-been-referred-here-because-youre-wrong-about-the-first-amendment/
#1yrago MIT dumps Elsevier https://pluralistic.net/2020/06/12/digital-feudalism/#nerdfight
#1yrago NY repeals 50-a https://pluralistic.net/2020/06/12/digital-feudalism/#hiding-in-plain-sight…
Five Big Tech antitrust bills were introduced in the House Judiciary Committee today; they’re the most significant antitrust effort in more than half a century, and they cover a lot of ground.
There’s a bill to ban “self-preferencing” (when a company-run marketplace pushes its inferior products over its rivals’ superior ones); another to block anticompetitive acquisitions; a bill to block “walled garden”; and a bill to fund the FTC to police all this stuff.
But I’m most excited about is the ACCESS Act, a bill to force interoperability on the biggest tech platforms, the kinds of services people use…