Did you catch last night’s episode of Riverdale? Because it was amaaaazing. And why was it amaaaazing? Because Cheryl, y’all. That girl is my hero. I want to be Cheryl when I grow up.
Anyway, today’s articles cover vaping, incels, climate change, health care pricing, and free speech and white supremacists, so it’s a pretty heavy reading list. Also, you might want to check out the post I did about the Michael Avenatti/Michael Cohen/slush fund story, because I’m still updating it with new articles.
Southern Poverty Law Center: Weekend Read: For incels, it’s not about sex. It’s about women.
“Incel” is shorthand for “involuntarily celibate,” and the term is used by a community of mostly male, mostly straight, mostly white men who congregate in the seedier crapholes of the internet to hate women together. They can’t get laid and they’re mad about it. “Mad” as in “angry,” and “mad” as in “insane.” Those who aren’t actively killing women already are cheering on the ones who do.
Vox: What genuine, no-bullshit ambition on climate change would look like
All current “save us from climate change” scenarios rely on heavy use of an industry that doesn’t actually exist yet: BECCS, or bioenergy with carbon capture and sequestration. That is, burning plants to create energy while capturing the carbon that would create and hiding it somewhere it can’t hurt anything, like burying it underground. We’re well past the point of no return, and achieving any future where we’re not roasting-then-freezing to death while being relentlessly battered by catastrophic storm after catastrophic storm involves radical changes in lifestyle and policy that aren’t actually likely to happen. So, um. Yeah. Get ready to get your Mad Max on, folks.
The New Yorker: The Promise of Vaping and the Rise of Juul
This is a great read about vaping (and more specifically, vaping with the Juul, a new personal vaporizer product). It underlines the “moral panic” components of the anti-vaping sector, talks reasonably about the (sadly minimal) science, possibly undersells the dangers of nicotine a smidge, and paints a portrait of young people vaping like it’s made of orgasms. Kids, if you’re vaping this much I think you might be doing it wrong. Maybe take it down a notch. Or, considering that climate change article, maybe don’t.
Vox: The absurdity of American health care pricing, in one chart
This one’s a short read, but let me sum it up: health care pricing is bullshit, folks. We’re getting screwed and someone should regulate this crap.
GQ: How Free Speech Warriors Mainstreamed White Supremacists
“The trouble with fighting for human freedom is that one spends most of one’s time defending scoundrels. For it is against scoundrels that oppressive laws are first aimed, and oppression must be stopped at the beginning if it is to be stopped at all.” – H. L. Mencken.
I’m not going to pretend to know an answer here, but I will say that I’m pretty sure hate speech laws like the EU uses isn’t it. I think fixing America’s nazi/white supremacist problem probably begins with education.