Sunday, September 18, 2016

Fortune Tellers: Bestseller Codes For Cold Rivers

“They were city women.  Comfortably seated and warm, they were hoping to experience the unexpected, an event or a person, preferably a person, to enter and alter their lives. 
~Herb garden quote

Religion in US ‘worth more than Google and Apple combined’ Guardian. Just think of the profit potential of running a New Age MEdia Dragon cult!

How Morality Changes in a Foreign Language Scientific American (via Bohemians who are fond of dragon and gecko tattoos)

There’s a lot of pregnant, interesting material laid on the table here How to pick the fastest line (NYT)
Memories of on those road trips to The Red Center and Beyond ...

There is a certain optimism behind all travel.”  American Soothsayer Rakes In Small Fortune , by Maria Paulo Brito and Ouch Sony, it has other interesting points ...

It is not often that chakras, incantations and astrological charts take centre stage in the NSW Supreme Court, still less in a corporate post-mortem. But on Monday a public examination into the spectacular collapse of stockbroking firm BBY heard from the Sydney psychic who has emerged as a central figure in this corporate saga
Sydney psychic advised on chakras and share prices

False Promises: Avoid “Miracle” Rice and Just Eat a Carrot 

Research has found bald men are tougher, more dominant and more powerful than their counterparts. Having a shaved head also makes adults appear taller and stronger, according to researchers from the University of Pennsylvania. There are health benefits too. Confirmed Prediction: Balding MEdia Dragons entitled to take over the world!!!

Our leaders are hooked on the narcotic of glory. That’s why we rush to war Guardian 

There is beyond reasonable doubt an evolutionary reason suburbia feels so miserable Business Insider

Sam Brunson, Every Old Scam is New Again (Surly Subgroup). “Michael Schvo, a real estate developer in New York, has been indicted for allegedly, well, doing almost exactly the same thing Kozlowski, and various 1980s fur-and jewelery-buyers, did.”

In an unusually deep and resonant voice, Guy Debelle would introduce "Velvet Nights", a 90-minute homage to the Lou Reed-fronted band Velvet Underground, leavened with so-called "greasy pop" from Adelaide bands including the Spikes, Exploding White Mice and Mad Turks from Istanbul.  Meet Guy Debelle and Philip Lowe, the odd couple who'll be running the Reserve Bank

The opening line of Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds' new album Skeleton Tree sounds like it could be plucked from anywhere in the band's gut-punchingly grim catalogue.  Yet, when Cave announces "you fell from the sky, crash landed in a field near the (Cold) River Adur" on opener Jesus Alone, he's making a starkly literal reference to the death of his son Arthur last year. Much has been written about how Cave managed to translate that nigh-unknowable grief onto tape, and take our word for it, it'll be spoken about for quite some time. It's that powerful. 

Do we only want to read about the things we’re already searching for? Don’t we risk losing the distinction between what’s important and what’s popular? NPR on books nominated for prestigious prizes .... The Bestseller Code suggests that there is an algorithm built to predict, with 80 percent accuracy, which cold rivers will float the fastest down the stream and become mega-bestsellers. What does it like? Young, strong heroines who are also misfits (the type found in The Girl on the Train, Gone Girl, and The Girl with the MEdia Dragon Tattoo). No sex, just “human closeness.” Frequent use of the verb “need.” Lots of contractions. Not a lot of exclamation marks. Dogs, yes; cats, meh. In all, the “bestseller-ometer” has identified 2,799 features strongly associated with bestsellers Bestseller code

Note also on this sunny Spring Morning  a 16-year-old British girl who earned £48,000 helping Chinese parents name their babies

Sunday Mornings in Sydney: “Oh no. A leaf blower.  The easiest way to witness the stupidity and misplaced hopes of all humanity is to watch, for twenty minutes, a human using a leaf blower.  With this machine, the man was saying, I will murder all quiet.  I will destroy the aural plane.  And I will do so with a machine that performs a task far less efficiently than I could with a rake.” 

Secular national movements of the 20th century assumed that "decline was the destiny of all religions,” as Michael Walzer puts it. They were wrong. So is  Walzer 

With OpenBazaar, Everyone Can Be a Retailer, Without Permission

Fact: Jozef Imrich didn’t become great successful blogging billionaire overnight... ...Oh Dear ....Oh Dear Data 
Clive James, bingewatcher: He's an incisive and discerning critic. But it's his affection for the abysmal that distinguishes his taste in television... 

Toni Servillo’s mysterious monk is an interloper who sends shock waves through a summit of Europe’s G8 economy ministers in Roberto Ando’s The Confessions. While this offbeat parable captures some — though not enough — of the anger felt by many Europeans at their leaders’ inability to get them out of the ongoing economic crisis, it’s hampered by an uncertain tone, and a major disappointment is the overall shortage of the black humor that electrified the director’s breakthrough film, the exhilarating Viva la liberta! (2013), also starring Servillo. Still, there is much to chuckle over as the plodding, plotting politicos are outmaneuvered by the monk’s sheer goodness. A flashy multinational cast that includes Daniel Auteuil, Connie Nielsen, Moritz Bleibtreu and Lambert Wilson should vote the film into Euro art theaters.
It’s refreshing to see that Ando and Angelo Pasquini’s screenplay uses a real-life institution, the International Monetary Fund (IMF),  as its punching bag Hollywoodreporter - The Confessions Le Confessioni
Bronte Gabbie

Mirror on Germany 
The end of East Germany was ushered in by massive protests across the land. But opposition to communist rule had started with a whisper... 
Jan Fleischhauer was forbidden to eat oranges as a child. Proper left-wing German families knew oranges grew in lands ruled by dictators. As for eating at McDonald’s? Mein Gott!...

The confessions starring Toni Servillo closesglobal-deals A G8 meeting is being held at a luxury hotel on the German coast. The world's most powerful economists are gathered to enact important provisions that will deeply influence the world economy. One of the guests is a mysterious Italian monk, invited by Daniel Rochè, the director of the International Monetary Fund. He wants the monk to receive his confession, that night, in secret. The next morning, Rochè is found dead...
Serving revenge Cold Communist secret police database goes online 
Former dissident publishes list, rush of visitors crashes web server
Intense public interest saw a server collapse when databases kept by the Czechoslovak communist secret police (StB) were put online by former dissident Stanislav Penc. Within an hour of the data going online around 11 a.m. July 7, the server collapsed. Over the next three days, the Web site,, registered 140,000 hits. It has since crashed again several times and was down as of press time.
Democracy needs to know the serious reading of books. Long books. Hard books. Books with which we have to struggle...

• The Dictator and I: Husak’s Émigrés and Exiles [Lessons of Charter 77  July 7 2nd coming of Vacal Havel or Lech Welechsa ; Defining Slavic Dreams The Cold(est) War River]

Google Searched For (And Found) The Perfect Tax Havens

LinkedIn's Reid Hoffman offers $US5 million to see Donald Trump's tax returns  

Steve Jobs effectively explains why Apple removed the headphone socket from the iPhone 7 [Video] 

 When Phil Schiller used the term ‘courage’ to describe Apple’s decision to remove the 3.5mm headphone socket from the iPhone 7, his choice of that particular word was probably not accidental.
It’s likely a reference to a comment by Steve Jobs when he was asked to explain another controversial omission of an established standard: the lack of support for Flash in the iPhone and iPad …

I realized this weekend that it's my fault that @Google shut down Google Reader. /1