TSUNAMI A DECADE ON
A personal account of living through March 11 and its aftermath. Ten years of recovery and rebuilding haven’t helped in many devastated areas, and most particularly Fukushima. The Fukushima disaster produced a new type of radioactive fallout. How Fukushima wrecked nuclear power in the west. Its terrible economics haven’t helped either — and the much-hyped “small modular reactors” that are supposed to save the industry won’t be available until the 2030s at the earliest.
The world will lack the political will to prevent dramatic climate change. How will it reshape trade, politics and infrastructure? Electric cars aren’t the panacea the Musks of the world claim they are, but entrench the worst decisions of the 20th century.
How we think about gender affects how we think about climate change (and not for the better). No advocate of carbon capture and storage — that includes the denialists of the Morrison government — has reckoned with the scale needed if carbon capture and storage is to make a difference on climate.
NEOLIBERALISM AT WORK
How baseball cards reveal the cartography of neoliberal failure. The Orwellian language of the animal slaughter industry. I was saying this back when you couldn’t go to a conference without some charmingly lilted Irish speaker spruiking the miracle of the Celtic Tiger: Irish economic statistics are garbage because it’s a tax haven. How Australia profiteers from the mass murder of some of the world’s worst dictatorships. And how to rebuild trust in Australia’s grievously underfunded aged care system.
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AND TURNING TO INTERNATIONAL NEWS
Clunky metaphor alert: Putin’s garbage policy is garbage, and it’s enraging Russians.* Are semiconductors Taiwan’s best defence against Beijing’s aggression? Before the controversial pause in the AstraZenenca rollout in Europe, there was a furious blame game about why it was being rolled out so slowly.
Ready for the return of mass tourism? (And why does everyone hate tourists, including tourists?) What’s the most used material on the planet? Because we’re running out of it, and organised crime is making a killing from it and for it.
*I hope you appreciate I skipped the obvious pun.
MEDIA AND POLITICS
Far right tech tycoon Peter Thiel is backing political novice, white supremacist whisperer and author of the inexplicably well-regarded Hillbilly Elegy, J.D. Vance. The Guardian has a big problem with Roy Greenslade, who has outed himself as a supporter of Irish nationalist terrorism. Elsewhere: trying on someone else’s grief: the bizarre world of identity hoaxers.
Before there was The Wire there was Homicide: Life on the Street, and at the centre of the extraordinary cast of that show was Yaphet Kotto, who died this week aged 81. From Bond villain to Alien to Midnight Run, Kotto elevated whatever he was in and no matter whom he played opposite, but he did his best work on the streets of Baltimore in Homicide: Life on the Street. The show’s final scene, when G speaks with the ghosts of Felton and Crosetti, is one of the great endings to a series.