July 2015 Links

In addition to the release of The Rocking Chair by Blue Sketch Press on 1 August 2015, and “Poetics of Control,” my recent review of Alexander R. Galloway’s The Interface Effect (2012), I’ve completed a number of exciting projects over the last three months, so be on the lookout for a couple essays, another review, an interview, and more poems in 2015 and 2016. For now, however, some links have been piling up over this historic month.

 

US Politics

Adam Liptak, “Supreme Court Ruling Makes Same-Sex Marriage a Right Nationwide.”

David M. Perry, “A New Right Grounded in the Long History of Marriage.”

Transcript: Obama delivers eulogy for Charleston pastor, the Rev. Clementa Pinckney.

Claudia Rankine, “‘The Condition of Black Life Is One of Mourning.'”

Emma Green, “Black Churches Are Burning Again in America.”

The Editorial Board of The New York Times, “Take Down the Confederate Flag, Symbol of Hatred.”

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More June 2015 Links

Environmental, Nuclear, and Disaster

Stephanie Kirchgaessner and John Hooper, “Pope Francis Warns of Destruction of Earth’s Ecosystem in Leaked Encyclical.”

Andrew Hoberek, “The Post-Apocalyptic Present.”

Matt Langione, “Will Art Save Our Descendants from Nuclear Waste?”

Tim McDonnell, “Here’s Why Obama Is Cracking Down on Airplane Pollution.”

“Atomic Explosion Tourism.”

Eric Markowitz, “Poison Prison: Is Toxic Dust Sickening Inmates Locked Up in Coal Country?”

Christopher Daley, “On Nuclear Criticism.”

Margaret DeMarco, “Details of Malmstrom Missile Officer’s Court-Martial.”

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Big News in Science and Other Links

Science

The first evidence for cosmic inflation–i.e., the Big Bang–was discovered this week.

Megan Garber at The Atlantic, “What It’s Like to be Right About the Big Bang?”

The search for Flight MH370 is revealing one thing: the ocean is filled with garbage.

Kim Stanley Robinson alert: Paul Rosenfeld, “Would You Take a One-Way Ticket to Mars?”

And as part of his forthcoming 3 million page novel, Breeze Avenue (2015), Richard Grossman has buried a crystal ball deep inside of Princeton Mountain in Colorado. The ball, “made of synthetic sapphire, which is almost as indestructible as diamond,” has the Ten Commandments inscribed on it in Hebrew, and in “20 million years, as a result of natural forces carefully calculated by the geologists, the Torah Ball will emerge from its eroded resting place and bear the Ten Commandments down the mountain.” Hyperarchivalists of the deep future rejoice!

Richard Grossman, The Torah Ball (Synthetic Sapphire, Princeton Mountain, 20 Million Years of Erosion, 2011).

Richard Grossman, The Torah Ball (Synthetic Sapphire, Princeton Mountain, 20 Million Years of Erosion, 2011).

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End of the Year Links

As I have been lax in posting things, yesterday I posted a bunch of links on recent stories regarding the NSA. Today I’m posting links of more general interest. I’ve tried to organize them by category.

 

Iran

The biggest story I have not had time to address were the diplomatic talks regarding Iran’s nuclear program. So here are some links to that.

On 5 November 2013 Reuters reported that Iran, Israel, and Middle East countries “took part in a meeting two weeks ago about prospects for an international conference on banning nuclear weapons in the Middle East.”

Temporary nuclear pact.

UN nuclear inspectors in Iran.

“Iran, from Enemy to Ally.”

Right on the verge of a nuclear agreement, perhaps the biggest event in nuclear nonproliferation in my lifetime, Bob Mendez fights Obama on imposing new sanctions on Iran, as do fifteen other democrats. More here.

Though from today: progress in nuclear talks.

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Fukushima, Apple, The Manhattan Project, and The Anthropocene

A bunch of interesting stories today:

“Water Leaks on the Fukushima Plant Could Contaminate Entire Pacific Ocean.”

The Faces of Project Y: the security badges for those working on the Manhattan Project.

And in further news from the Orwellian security state: “Apple has patented a piece of technology which would allow government and police to block transmission of information, including video and photographs, from any public gathering or venue they deem ‘sensitive,’ and ‘protected from externalities.'”

The Atlantic has amazing time-lapse satellite images showing the massive changes to the human-built world. An archive of disaster.

A conversation with Leigh Phillips, Gwyneth Jones, Marge Piercy, Ken MacLeod and Kim Stanley Robinson.

And from The Chronicle of Higher Education: “The National Institutes of Health announced on Wednesday that it had reached an agreement to give the family of Henrietta Lacks, an African-American woman who died of cervical cancer in 1951, some control over researchers’ access to the genomic data of cells derived from her tumor, according to The Wall Street Journal.”

Excerpt: Kim Stanley Robinson and Disaster Projection

From Kim Stanley Robinson’s novel, Forty Signs of Rain (2004), from his Science in the Capital Trilogy:

The second day of the storm passed as a kind of suspended moment, everything continuing as it had the day before, everyone in the area living through it, enduring, waiting for conditions to change. The rain was not as torrential, but so much of it had fallen in the previous twenty-four hours that it was still sheeting off the land into the flooded areas and keeping them flooded. The clouds continued to crash together overhead, and the tides were still higher than normal, so that the whole Piedmont region surrounding Chesapeake Bay was inundated. Except for immediate acts of a lifesaving nature, nothing could be done except endure. All transport was drowned. The phones remained down, and power losses left hundreds of thousands without electricity. Escapes from drowning took precedence even over journalism (almost), and even though reporters from all over the world were converging on the capital to report on this most spectacular story–the capital of the hyperpower, drowned and smashed–most of them could only get as close as the edge of the storm, or the flood; inside that it was an ongoing state of emergency, and everyone involved with rescues, relocations, and escapes of various kinds. The National Guard was out, all helicopters were enlisted into the effort; the video and digital imagery generated for the world to see was still incidental to other things; that in itself meant ordinary law had been suspended, and there was pressure to bring things back to all-spectacle all-the-time. Part of the National Guard found itself posted on the roads outside the region, to keep people from flooding the area as the water had. (Kim Stanley Robinson, Forty Signs of Rain [New York: Bantam Books, 2004], 345-6.)