Summaries of podcasts, lectures, and interviews.

October 14, 2015



Quote of the Day

“Always borrow money from a pessimist. He won’t expect it back.”

-said Oscar Wilde

Last year some members of the Afghan Taliban switched their allegiance to ISIS. In places like the Maamand Valley near the Pakistani border, they’re even winning control of land. The ideologies aren’t much different, but ISIS has a lot of cash, which they use to recruit members. There’s kind of an incestuous relationship between these fanatical groups. The original al-Qaeda was separate but related to Taliban, and sometimes it could be hard to distinguish the two. ISIS started as al-Qaeda in Iraq, the AQ franchise the wreaked havoc after the 2003 invasion. Now some Taliban are apparently more smitten with ISIS’ brand of extreme sharia more than they are Taliban’s brand of extreme sharia. Although one might hope that at silver lining here would be that this fractiousness would weaken the insurgency in Afghanistan, really it has just made things even worse for Afghan civilians. Read Mas
Far-right conservatives worried that Paul Ryan is too liberal
A lot of Republicans want Congressman Paul Ryan of Wisconsin to be the next Speaker of the House. When he ran with Romney, some worried that he was too conservative. Now some accuse him of being too liberal. The Drudge Report ran a series of headlines trying to hammer his “left” policy positions: voting for the bailouts, negotiating for a budget bill, and being open to accepting legal immigrants. Read Mas
Two black holes are going to collide
Astronomers at Columbia University published a paper in Nature, a prestigious academic journal, saying that two black holes in the constellation Virgo are heading for a collision 100,000 years for now. In cosmological terms, that might as well be 2 hours. The two black holes are huge, combined they are about the size of 1 billion suns. Read Mas
Powerful News: These are Some Powerful People

These are so beautiful!

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