Saturday, June 16, 2018

Cancerous Presidency: Donald Trump's Strange and Deadly Love Affair with Asbestos

by Nomad

Back in August 2016, Nomadic Politics featured a post on Trump's peculiar relationship with the carcinogen asbestos. The other day, I took a look at that post and decided it was time to update it.

Trump's Outlandish Claim

Of all of the Trump's absurd notions, one of the most peculiar is his ideas about the World Trade Center and asbestos. In his opinion, if only the world had listened to him, the Twin Towers would not have fallen.
Had, he claimed, contractors not been forced to use an alternative fire retardant, the World Trade Center would have been able to withstand the attack. If only asbestos had been used, the Twin Towers would still be standing today. 

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

How Gerrymandering Negatively Impacts the Economic Development of a District

by Nomad

We all know that gerrymandering as a tool to win elections has proved advantageous. Some critics have claimed that this partisan tactic has in recent years become more extreme and has begun to warp democracy.
In a search for the facts, researchers at Boston College decided to look a bit closer. They began by asking a simple question: How does gerrymandering affect the quality of political representation in a district?

Sunday, June 10, 2018

Sanity Sunday - A Selection of Dream Pop Songs

by Nomad  

I've long ago given up trying to follow musical genres and sub-genres. It just seemed impossible but it does help you find the type of music you like.
After listening to some music I enjoyed this week, I learned that alternative rock and neo-psychedelia (another unknown genre) hooked up sometime in the 80s and had a love child called Dream Pop.
As a subgenre, Dream Pop is all about atmosphere and often features "breathy vocals and processed, echo-laden guitars and synthesizers." The lyrics tend to be short poems.
I think you will find this style soothing on the nerves.

Friday, June 8, 2018

A Nation of Suckers: How a 1947 Film Exposes the Truth about Trumpism

by Nomad

Released in 1947, this 23-minute film, "Don't be a Sucker" was produced by United States Department of War. Its aim was to educate the American public about the dangers of fascism, racism empowered by prejudice and discrimination.

The Guys Who Stay Up Nights

In a real awakening of right-wing extremism, the message of this film has found a new audience. I found it interesting (and timely) how rabble-rousers were portrayed as swindling con artists, rather than just power-hungry politicians. "There are all kinds of games and all kinds of suckers." 

Extolling the beauty of American diversity, the narrator points out that America is composed of..
..all kinds of people, people from different countries with different religions, different colored skins, free people. They can live together and work together and build America together because they're free, free to vote to say what they please go to their own churches, to pick their own jobs.
But, the film reminds us, "there are guys who stay up nights figuring out how to take that away from [us]."

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Speaking is Difficult

by Nomad

Directed and edited by AJ Schnack, this short but powerful film is very simple in concept: a catalog of the 911 calls of mass shootings in America since January 2011.  In reverse order, the first call is by a young man from Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.