‘Landscape of fear’: what a mass of rotting reindeer carcasses taught scientists

Phoebe Weston, © The Guardian
July 8, 2020

In August 2016, a park ranger stumbled upon 323 dead wild tundra reindeer in Norway’s remote Hardangervidda plateau. They had been killed in a freak lightning event. But instead of removing the carcasses, the park decided to leave them where they were, allowing nature to take its course – and scientists to study this island of decomposition and how it might change the arctic tundra ecosystem.

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Every society produces its own cultural conceits, a set of lies and delusions about itself that thrive in the face of all contrary evidence.

-Jack Weatherford

France: Bus driver dies after ‘attack over face masks’ in Bayonne

© BBC News
July 10, 2020

A bus driver has died in France, five days after he was attacked by passengers who reportedly refused to wear face masks, his family says.

Philippe Monguillot, aged 59, had been left brain dead after the assault in the south-western city of Bayonne.

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Fascism is not an exception to humanity, but part of it. Even people who enlisted in such movements out of ambition, greed, or hatred likely were unaware of, or denied to themselves, their true motives.

-Madeleine K. Albright

“New Right” Leaders Are Co-opting Progressive Language to Mislead Voters

David Forrest, © Truthout
July 10, 2020

Over the past two years, a growing and somewhat unconventional faction of leaders on the American right have caught the attention of the press. This faction — who often refer to themselves as either the “new populist right” or “national conservatives” — includes, most notably, Tucker Carlson at Fox News and Senators Josh Hawley, Marco Rubio and Tom Cotton. It also features several lower-profile but increasingly prominent journalists and authors, such as Julius Krein (founder and editor of American Affairs), Oren Cass (founder and executive director of American Compass) and Saagar Enjeti (host of “Rising” at The Hill).

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Nothing is so difficult as not deceiving oneself.

-Ludwig Wittgenstein

When is a murder not a murder? When we call the dismembering and dissolving of bodies a ‘targeted killing’

Robert Fisk, © The Independent
July 9, 2020

Murder is murder is murder. Sawing up and dissolving a Saudi journalist and blasting to shreds an Iranian military commander have, of course, more or less the same result. Not quite, though: Jamal Khashoggi’s Saudi murderers didn’t leave us a piece of bone or even a fingernail to bury. Even John Haigh, the “acid bath murderer”, left enough fragments of his victims around to secure his execution.

Congressional Republicans are dismantling the limited environmental protections initiated by Richard Nixon, who would be something of a dangerous radical in today’s political scene.

-Noam Chomsky