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Category Archives: Recommended Books

Book Review – A Sober Look at the ‘Cartoonishly Chaotic’ Trump White House

The New York Times: “In The Divider: Trump in the White House, 2017-2021, by Peter Baker and Susan Glasser, political journalists keep their cool as they chronicle the outrageous conduct and ugly infighting that marked a presidency like no other. If “The Divider” has a dominant theme, it may be the struggle within the “almost cartoonishly chaotic White House” by people more reasonable and ethical than Trump to rein in his most dangerous instincts. Because everyone had different ideas about where to restrain and where to encourage Trump, the White House became a den of “ongoing tribal warfare,” they write — an “Apprentice”-style reality-TV show in which the parties vied to win Trump’s favor and outlast their rivals, even while at times sabotaging the president’s agenda as they saw fit. How Times reporters cover politics. We rely on our journalists to be independent observers. So while Times staff members may vote, they are not allowed to endorse or campaign for candidates or political causes. This includes participating in marches or rallies in support of a movement or giving money to, or raising money for, any political candidate or election cause…The backbiting — and the sub rosa efforts to thwart their own president — led to constant personnel turnover, a dreary parade of firings, resignations and defenestrations. Trump would cashier one aid in favor of someone more compliant, only for the new guy to find that Trump was even more willful and heedless of rules than he had dreamed. Time and again, staffers debate whether to stay put in hopes of mitigating Trump’s basest impulses or to run screaming from the room. Even more stunning is the number of onetime loyalists who, after their tours of duty, emerged as among the president’s most strident critics…”

A Prehistory of Social Media

Driscoll, Kevin. “A Prehistory of Social Media.” Issues in Science and Technology 38, no. 4 (Summer 2022): 20–23. “The standard account of internet history took shape in the early 1990s, as a mixture of commercial online services, university networks, and local community networks mutated into something bigger, more commercial, and more accessible to the general… Continue Reading

Why you (probably) won’t finish reading this story

Vox: “We live in a distracted world, almost certainly the most distracted world in human history. And if you’re part of this circus, you’re drowning in options and gadgets and screens and you’re being pulled in a million directions seemingly all at once. If you spend any time online, you already know this. You’re constantly… Continue Reading

The Propagandists’ Playbook How Conservative Elites Manipulate Search and Threaten Democracy

“The Propagandists’ Playbook by Francesca Bolla Tripodi, assistant professor at the School of Information and Library Science at University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, and a research affiliate at the Data & Society Research Institute. “The Propagandists’ Playbook peels back the layers of the right-wing media manipulation machine to reveal why its strategies are so… Continue Reading

There is a lot of antisemitic hate speech on social media—and algorithms are partly to blame

Fast Company: “Antisemitic incidents have shown a sharp rise in the United States. The Anti-Defamation League, a New York-based Jewish civil rights group that has been tracking cases since 1979, found that there were 2,717 incidents in 2021. This represents an increase of 34% over 2020. In Europe, the European Commission found a sevenfold increase in… Continue Reading

Law and Artificial Intelligence

Law and Artificial Intelligence – Regulating AI and Applying AI in Legal Practice, Bart Custers, Eduard Fosch-Villaronga Provides an in-depth overview of what is currently happening in the field of Law and Artificial Intelligence Facilitates the understanding of how future developments in AI may raise legal concerns Gives an insight into how we may address… Continue Reading

Russia in the Age of Climate Change

Klimat – Russia in the Age of Climate Change, Thane Gustafson: “A discerning analysis of the future effects of climate change on Russia, the major power most dependent on the fossil fuel economy. Russia will be one of the countries most affected by climate change. No major power is more economically dependent on the export… Continue Reading

3 surprising ways to cope with climate change

Mashable: “…In the U.S., one survey conducted by the American Psychiatric Association found that more than two-thirds of Americans are somewhat or extremely anxious about climate change. Last year, the Lancet polled 10,000 youth between the ages of 16 and 25 from around the world and found that more than half reported feeling sad, anxious,… Continue Reading

Legal Research Demystified, Second Edition

Voigt, Eric, Legal Research Demystified, Second Edition (Table of Contents of Book and Excerpt from Chapter 6 on Secondary Sources) (April 14, 2022). Legal Research Demystified: A Step-by-Step Approach, Second Edition (Carolina Academic Press, 2022), ISBN 978-1-5310-2130-6, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4083845 “Since 2019, Legal Research Demystified has quickly gained adoptions at over thirty law schools.… Continue Reading

The Atlantic Introducing an Expanded Books Section

The Atlantic: “…That quality of literature—and the criticism that helps make sense of it—is a large part of why we’re excited to be expanding books coverage at The Atlantic. Since its founding in 1857, this magazine “of Literature, Art, and Politics” has been home to great writing about the momentous books and literary debates of… Continue Reading

Confronting Misinformation in the Age of Cheap Speech

LawFare: “In 1995, Eugene Volokh published a law review article in which he predicted that the rapidly growing internet would “dramatically reduce the costs of distributing speech” and that “the new media order that these technologies will bring will be much more democratic and diverse than the environment we see now.” The concept, which Volokh… Continue Reading