Monday, July 19, 2021

My Surreal Sips in Vienna: The U.S. didn’t start Cold War 2

ASIO launches spy recruitment campaign on Instagram, says trench coats and fedoras are a thing of the past

The Creative Urge: John Coltrane on Perseverance Against Rejection, the Innovator’s Mindset, and How Hardship Fuels Art

“Innovators always seek to revitalize, extend and reconstruct the status quo in their given fields… Quite often they are the rejects, outcasts, sub-citizens, etc. of the very societies to which they bring so much sustenance

ProPublica: The Billionaire Playbook — How Sports Owners Use Their Teams To Avoid Millions In Taxes

Back in my younger years in the practice of tax law, I heard something like an aphorism or at least a pithy statement meant to suggest some truth that the difference between a doctor and a lawyer cheating on their taxes is that the doctor will file a false return underreporting tax liability (a felony) whereas the lawyer will file no return (generally a misdemeanor).  While there may be some truth in the statement, there is probably not as much truth as those acting on it by failing to file would like to hope.

The U.S. didn’t start Cold War 2 Noahpinion. Noah Smith.

The US government is investigating a recent rash of mysterious health incidents reported by American diplomats and other government employees in Vienna, Austria.

Some of the symptoms are similar to those first reported by US diplomats and spies in Havana, Cuba, in 2016 and 2017 for which no definitive cause has yet been determined, according to officials.

US investigating possible cases of 'Havana syndrome' among diplomats in Vienna

My Surreal Vienna Wein

Despite the official statement, Australian defense officials told local media that they found the act to be “unfriendly” and “provocative.” This was the first time China sent a warship designed explicitly for military surveillance into Australia’s EEZ. In 2014, the Australian Air Force monitored three PLAN warships conducting an exercise within the EEZ between Christmas Island and Indonesia. Those exercises followed the PLAN’s transit of the strategic Sunda Strait.

Chinese spy ship returns to waters off Queensland ahead of Defence's largest war-fighting exercise

Second Chinese spy ship approaches Australia to monitor military exercises after being 'on our radar for some time'

Cuba and end of Communism - Are Chinese Navy Spy Ships Within Exclusive Economic Zones Soon to Be a Fact of Life? 

China’s double standard on military surveillance within exclusive economic zones becomes clearer.

AN ARMY OF MEDIA DRAGON DAVIDS:  The Undergrad Who Found China’s Nuclear Arsenal: What a Hobby.

A couple of weeks ago, word arrived that 120 new missile silos had been discovered in the desert of Northern China. While the press made much of this evidence that China is busy expanding its nuclear weapons program, they did not look at who found the silos and how he did it.

As it happens, the silos were spotted by Decker Eveleth, an undergrad at Reed College. He spent weeks poking around on satellite imagery until he happened upon the silos’ distinctive inflatable dome coverings. (Which, in turn, has led some people to describe them as “bouncy houses of death.”)

In what I believe is his only interview about the incident, Eveleth told me about his process, and we covered it here in a larger story about all the goings on in the private space industry and what is now possible in Low Earth Orbit.

Florida’s Condo Collapse Foreshadows a Concrete Crack-Up Wired

Subway Commuters Wade Through Waist-Deep Waters As Heavy Rainfall Triggers Flash FloodsGothamist


The Meaning Of The Native Graves The American Conservative. Hoo boy.

 Aljoša Jurinić playing Chopin Etudes Op.25

What many people believe, and act on.  How much of it is true?

Saudi austerity

Zaila Avant-garde.  And here is an excellent short video of her true skills, by her own account

 Back to normal: the West’s Cultural Revolution is over

Profile of nature writer Dara McAnulty (NYT)

When I was a kid, my mother told me I could be anyone I wanted to be. Turns out, identity theft is a crime.

 Why might the 21st century be the world’s most important century?

 “A patient with a spinal injury was left waiting in a corridor at Sunshine Hospital for 14 hours on Monday just days after Australia’s leading doctors warned that hospitals across the country were at “breaking point”.”  Link here.

 “The humble rice gruel from Bengal, Panta Bhat, on Masterchef Australia is a wholesome rejection of the hierarchy of tastes.