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Aus Le Monde diplomatique: Der katalanische Knoten - taz.de
Der alte Konflikt aus den 1930er-Jahren ist wieder aufgebrochen. Die Madrider Regierung stützt sich dabei auf ein veraltetes Grundgesetz.
longread  artikel  katalonien  spanien 
4 days ago by longfried
The great British Brexit robbery: how our democracy was hijacked | Technology | The Guardian
A shadowy operation involving big data, billionaire friends of Trump and the disparate forces of the Leave campaign heavily influenced the result of the EU referendum. Is our electoral process still fit for purpose?
politics  bigdata  brexit  article  longread 
4 days ago by longfried
Security Breach and Spilled Secrets Have Shaken the N.S.A. to Its Core - The New York Times
A serial leak of the agency’s cyberweapons has damaged morale, slowed intelligence operations and resulted in hacking attacks on businesses and civilians worldwide.
nsa  longread  article  hacking 
4 days ago by longfried
These Researchers Dug Through People’s Garbage to Find Out Why We Waste Food
In my ideal world, we would have a system so efficient that we don’t have surplus—and where we design from the start how to make sure people have enough food—not provide food assistance in a way that’s sort of happenstance. That said, we’re very far off from that, and we have so much surplus food that it feels like a better use of it to provide immediate food assistance for people than not.

In Denver, we looked at how much food is not being rescued, how much of the meal gap it would address, and how much it would cost if it were. [The report shows that an ambitious but realistic 901 additional tons could be rescued to close almost 10 percent of the meal gap, costing about $2 million. The full—but more hypothetical—potential would rescue more than 4,000 tons to close 46 percent of the meal gap, with an estimated $6.2 million price tag.] The ongoing capacity to rescue food has a much larger price tag than the initial infrastructure investment.
longread 
5 days ago by rosscatrow
Walking While Black
Communities along those arterial roads were left with treacherous four-lane thoroughfares that stretch for a half-mile or longer before offering crosswalks. Along Beach Boulevard, for instance, there’s one stretch where crosswalks are 1.3 miles apart. There are multiple low-income apartment complexes in between those crossings.
But the city’s issues for pedestrians went beyond its network of dangerous highways and broad avenues. Those who travel on foot in Jacksonville are faced with a disconnected network of sidewalks, which are often in disrepair. City officials haven’t even completely mapped all of them.
And while Jacksonville is the country’s largest city by land mass, its public transportation system has consistently been found wanting in national studies. People who rely on the bus system can put themselves in danger just trying to access their rides. The Jacksonville Transportation Authority, for example, has 321 bus stops on roads without sidewalks and 993 bus stops not within 300 feet of a crosswalk, according to the most recently available data.
longread 
6 days ago by rosscatrow
How the Zombie Fungus Takes Over Ants’ Bodies to Control Their Minds
When the fungus infects a carpenter ant, it grows through the insect’s body, draining it of nutrients and hijacking its mind. Over the course of a week, it compels the ant to leave the safety of its nest and ascend a nearby plant stem. It stops the ant at a height of 25 centimeters—a zone with precisely the right temperature and humidity for the fungus to grow. It forces the ant to permanently lock its mandibles around a leaf. Eventually, it sends a long stalk through the ant’s head, growing into a bulbous capsule full of spores. And because the ant typically climbs a leaf that overhangs its colony’s foraging trails, the fungal spores rain down onto its sisters below, zombifying them in turn.
longread 
6 days ago by rosscatrow
Why Companies Like Toys ‘R’ Us Love to Go Bust in Richmond, Va.
But in September, when Toys “R” Us filed for one of the largest bankruptcies of the year, it did not go to nearby Newark.

Instead, the toy company followed an increasing number of corporations — from Gymboree to a major coal company to a Pennsylvania fracking company — that are choosing to file for bankruptcy in Richmond, Va.

In recent years, Richmond has become the destination wedding spot for failed companies. The United States Bankruptcy Court there offers several features attractive to the executives, bankers and lawyers trying to get an edge in the proceedings.
longread 
8 days ago by rosscatrow
Starship Chicago
Architect Helmut Jahn’s kaleidoscopic, controversial State of Illinois Center in Chicago, which shocked the world when it opened in 1985, may not be long for this world. Today the building is a run down rusty shadow of its former self, occupying a lucrative downtown block and deemed expendable by the cash-strapped state legislature.

Despite initial construction flaws and hefty refurbishment costs, this singular architectural vision of an open, accessible, and inspiring civic building—defined by its iconic, soaring atrium--remains intact. Four years after the stinging loss of brutalist icon Prentice Women’s Hospital, Chicago preservationists, along with the building’s original champion, Governor James R. Thompson, are gearing up for a major battle to save the city’s most provocative architectural statement.
longread 
9 days ago by rosscatrow

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