Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Who Are You When I'm Not Looking: First Draft News

INK BOTTLE“Taste is made of a thousand distastes.”
~ Paul Valéry, Tel que 

An idealist is one who, on noticing that roses smell better
 than a cabbage, concludes that it will also make better soup. 
~  H. L. Mencken, born on this date in 1880 

Explosion in New York’s Chelsea Neighborhood Injures Dozens 
WSJ and Powerful Blast Injures at Least 29 in Manhattan; Second Device Found NYT
Ten ways to adapt to Latitude East perpertually bored cells ...

One for the books: Novelist runs into fiery home for laptop 

Sydney Greeters scheme enrols local volunteers to show visitors their Sydnerella 

Nicholas Eberstadt, a demographer with the American Enterprise Institute and author of the forthcoming Men Without Work, recently laid out the uncomfortable facts in the Wall Street Journal:

…the phenomenon of men opting out of work is limited to the native-born.  That is one reason why I don’t think it is just demand

 “O wad some Pow’r the giftie gie us
To see oursels as ithers see us!
It wad frae mony a blunder free us,
An’ foolish notion:
What airs in dress an’ gait wad lea’e us,
An’ ev’n devotion!” – Burns.

First Draft News has added more firepower to fight misinformation

Federal Chief Information Security Officers: Opportunities Exist to Improve Roles and Address Challenges to Authority, GAO-16-686: Published: Aug 26, 2016. Publicly Released: Sep 15, 2016

All up 1000 entities, involving hundreds of taxpayers – many of which include high-wealth individuals and their lawyers and accountants – are under investigation by the Australian Taxation Office Panama Papers

The raids followed AUSTRAC identifying suspicious cross-border movement of funds between Australia and other countries amounting to $2.5 billion linked to more than 1000 Australian entities.

World Economic Forum – “When it comes to empathy and inclusion, which company department would you expect to see at the forefront? Your guess might be Human Resources – but bizarrely, you’d be wrong. In fact, according to many who work in the field of “soft skills” and workplace inclusion, HR departments are the least likely of all departments – more than even CEOs and board members – to take on an office empathy programme. According to data in the Global Empathy Index, the more empathic the company the higher its growth and productivity rates. Most senior business leaders understand that empathy correlates with profit. But all too often, it’s not leaders but HR departments that call meetings with diversity consultants and inclusion experts to try to explain why empathy has no place in their organization…”

Why CEOs are even more grotesquely paid than you thought  Czech (sic) out  An important new paper by William Lazonick and Matt Hopkins,which is recapped in detail in The Atlantic, explains this gaping disparity. The culprit is the differences in the approach used to measure stock-related compensation, which is the bulk of top executive pay Winners Take It All - The Brewing Moments of The Next French Revolution ...

Stuart Gibson, The Beatings Will Continue Until Morale Improves (Tax Analysts Blog). “Here’s the problem: In an effort to punish the IRS institutionally, Congress has punished 90,000-plus dedicated employees who did nothing wrong, along with millions of American taxpayers.” All the more reason for Commissioner Koskinen to resign in favor of someone who might gain the confidence of Congress

Think Outside the Search Engine Box 

Although they will deny it furiously, for decades the major parties have been ducking and diving trying every means possible to dislodge Independent Lord Mayor Clover Moore from Sydney Town Hall. The reason? Because they just can’t seem to persuade the people of the City of Sydney to actually vote her out at the ballot box.

With Ms Moore on Saturday increasing her majority on the City of Sydney council, Premier Mike Baird is just the latest NSW leader to learn the hard way that you can’t legislate her out of existence.  Every time they tinker — be it changing a boundary here or introducing a whole new voting system there — Clover comes back stronger than ever Moore Lessons

The Economist dedicated its cover and a special briefing to the "post truth" trope last week. If you really want to go down that path, though, a historical perspective is probably a better bet. FWIW Economist readers were on fact-checkers' side.

Just how did those Kremlin propagandists get so good at taking over Twitter with fake news stories? The Daily Beast investigates and warns that social media's lack of fact-checking could impact the U.S. elections

Facts are stubborn. So are fact-checkers. In an election season that should go down in history as "fact-checking's finest year," fact-checkers are going to need every bit of that perseverance, Wired magazine says.

In an era of sweeping change, how can freedom of information keep up?

Russ Fox, The Tax King Goes to Prison. “For individuals shopping tax professionals, remember that if it sounds too good to be true it probably is. If you make a lot of money, you’re likely going to pay a lot in tax. There is no tax fairy to make your taxes go away.”

New Tricks Make ISIS, Once Easily Tracked, a Sophisticated Opponent WSJ 

Come not between the dragon, and his wrath. 

Books ‘Avid Reader’: Robert Gottlieb’s candid look inside the golden era of publishing: On my desk, next to a P.G. Wodehouse coffee mug filled with pencils, I keep a lapel button that reads: “Life? Of course I have a life. It’s a life filled with books.” As it happens, you won’t find a better precis than that of Robert Gottlieb’s splen­did memoir “Avid Reader.”

"Supreme Wordsmith: Antonin Scalia's former law clerk remembers the justice for his pen as much as his gavel." Evan Young has this essay in the current issueof Duke Magazine.
Barbara Lee’s Lone Vote on Sept. 14, 2001, Was as Prescient as it was Brave and Heroic The Intercept. Another Glenn Greenwald piece worth your time

How building design changed after 9/11 The Conversation

Via Defense News: Top 100 for 2016 – sort by Rank, Last Year’s Rank, Company, Leadership, Country, Revenue.

News from the Profession. KPMG Drops an Annoying, Dysfunctional, Possibly Corrupt Client (Caleb Newquist, Going Concern). “It’s so odd to read about a board obstructing auditors so blatantly.”

Putin, IS and military preparedness: Six essential reads The Conversation. What is it with the number 6 in today’s links? 

Fake news stories were "trending" again on Facebook, this time about the 9/11 terrorist attacks. ICYMI, a few steps Facebook could take to deal with the situation. (First, hire fact-checkers).
Better to sit all night than to go to bed with a dragon:
For decades, Hollywood has provided plenty of examples of psychopaths at the top of the corporate ladder, but a growing body of research is revealing the truth is similar to fiction 
We found one in five [people were] found to have clinically elevated levels of psychopathy.

Eddie Hayson needs to stop hanging around footballers. I'm just not sure he can