The British Hacker’s Fight for His Life

Lauri Love is charged with masterminding a 2013 attack by Anonymous on US government websites. He has not protested his innocence – he only points out that, without seeing the evidence, which the US Department of Justice refuses to reveal until he is on US soil, he cannot say one way or the other. But he had the means, motive and opportunity to carry out the crimes of which he stands accused. Even if Love is guilty, however, there are important legal and moral questions about whether he should be extradited to the US – a nation that has prosecuted hackers with unrivalled severity, and one where Love could be sentenced to spend the rest of his life in prison. Had Love been allowed to stand trial in the UK following his initial arrest, and had he pled guilty to every charge, he would have spent a maximum of 18 months in prison. Four years after his initial arrest, Love has nearly exhausted his legal options. His extradition to the US is now perilously close. In September 2016, a district judge refused to block Love’s deportation.

The Guardian’s Audio Long Reads

 

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Fantasyland

The roots of the post-truth, alternative facts present can be discovered in America’s “promiscuous devotion to the untrue” and its instinct to believe in make believe, evident across four centuries of magical thinkers and true believers, hucksters and suckers, who have embedded an appetite for believe-whatever-you-want fantasy into the national DNA, argues Kurt Andersen, author of a new book, “Fantasyland: How America Went Haywire, a 500-Year History.” Kwame Anthony Appiah, NYU professor, philosopher, and author of fiction and nonfiction books questions him about the bold claim that America’s love of the fantastic has made this country exceptional in a way that has yet to be understood?

The New York Public Library

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The Risk Of Nuclear War With North Korea

Photo by gruntzooki / CC BY-SA

‘New Yorker’ writer Evan Osnos visited North Korea in August to understand what they really mean when they talk about nuclear war. Senior officials explained to him why nuclear weapons are an essential part of their society. “They will tell you that the reason they will never give up nuclear weapons is that they remember what happened to Saddam Husein and Muammar Gaddafi both of whom where developing nuclear weapons at one point, gave them up, and as a result ended up loosing their regime, and both of them ended executed. They talk about it quite openly, that the lesson of Libya – the lesson of Gaddafi’s fall – was that, if you go down that path, you leave yourself vulnerable to the changing whims of the United States, and you can ultimately be cast aside. And so Kim Jong-un and his government are adamant that they will not make the same mistake.”

Fresh Air

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Miss Buchanan’s Period of Adjustment

Brown v. Board of Education might be the most well-known Supreme Court decision that ordered desegregation of public schools for black and white students. Although considered to be a major victory in the fight for civil rights, the ruling left thousands of black teachers without a job. We hear from the Browns, the family behind the story.

Revisionist History

 

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Forbidden Knowledge

The validity and significance of IQ as a measure of intelligence, the problem of social stratification, Trump as a “murder weapon”, universal basic income, and other topics discussed by Sam Harris and Charles Murray – the author of highly controversial book “The Bell Curve” that brought a havoc to his academic career twenty three years ago and still haunts him today.

Waking Up with Sam Harris

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Financial Sector, Makers and Takers

Why finance has become an excessively powerful in the U.S. and has handicapped the growth and effectiveness of the rest of the economy. What can be done about it? Journalist and author Rana Foroohar of the Financial Times talks with EconTalk host Russ Roberts about her book, “Makers and Takers.”

EconTalk

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The Reach of the First Amendment

The First Amendment, though most closely associated with freedom of speech, actually extends to works of visual art, music, poetry and some, but not all, forms of expression. It’s left for courts to draw the line in cases of apparent threat to community’s standarts of propriety. Harvard Law professor Mark Tushnet joins us to talk about the freedoms covered and omitted at the top of the Bill of Rights, which he writes about in “Free Speech Beyond Words: The Surprising Reach of the First Amendment”.

KERA’s Think

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Government Secrets Worth Leaking… or Keeping?

So, the C.I.A. has a back door to your phone. At least, according to the Vault 7 data dump from WikiLeaks. The documents say that if your device is connected to the internet, the American government wants in. And has a few tricky tools to do it. But they’ve had some sneaky tools for a while now. Just ask Daniel Rigmaiden.

Photo: Stencil by Banksy – nolifebeforecoffee / Flickr-creativecommons

Note to Self

 

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Malcolm Gladwell Argues for Mediocrity

Malcolm Gladwell in a conversation on running fast, satire as a weapon, Daniel Ellsberg and Edward Snowden, Harvard’s under-theorized endowment, why early childhood intervention is overrated, long-distance running, and Malcolm’s happy risk-averse career going from one “fur-lined rat hole to the next.”

Conversations with Tyler

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“The Complacent Class” with Katherine Mangu-Ward

Today, Americans are working harder than ever to avoid change. In this episode, Editor-in-chief of “Reason” Katherine Mangu-Ward grill Tyler Cowen about “The Complacent Class”, a follow-up to his previous book “The Great Stagnation”. Tyler has found out that Americans are moving less, starting fewer businesses, marrying people more like themselves, and relying as much as they can on algorithms that wall them off from anything that might be too new or different. As a result, we could see a version of America that is more segregated, more unequal, and no longer the leader of tomorrow’s greatest achievements.
According to Malcolm Gladwell, “His brilliant new book…has been on my nightstand after I devoured it in one sitting. I am at round-the-clock Cowen saturation right now.”

Conversations with Tyler

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