Reading List: War with Canada, Perverse Tech Incentives, and BS Spirituality.
DEARESTS! I love you and I see you and I appreciate you and I wish you nothing but a peace-and-Kindle-filled weekend. Oh, and if you're into romantic comedies, I have only one thing on the Watch List this weekend: Set It Up on Netflix, a romcom that harks back to the late 90s golden age and may have made me grin like an idiot during this past and ever-so-trying week.
But in terms of reading, get those tabs a'ready!
Ellen Pao: The Perverse Incentives That Help Incels Thrive In Tech (WIRED) - It’s rare that I read anything by Pao without throwing my hands up in the air and yelling “yaaaaas queen” like a twentysomething, but this particular examination of the toxic tech hiring and HR practices that lead to the empowerment of hate at technology companies is pertinent, urgent and timely.
Kevin Lippert: That Time the U.S. Almost Went to War With Canada (POLITICO) - Come for the maple-flavored Canadian stereotypes, stay for the fascinating history of tiffs big and small between America and its saner/kinder Hat, and a story of how a post-WWI U.S. prepared to invade the True North Strong and Free, should the need ever arise.
Jack Shafer: Is It OK to Sleep With Your Sources? (Also POLITICO) - Um, pretty sure it’s not a great idea? But Shafer provides a good overview of the Watkins/Wolfe scandal in D.C., as well as an overview of the long history of Fourth Estate fraternization / sexy time.
Emily Heil: How Melania Trump’s jacket choice overtook her visit to the Texas border shelters (Washington Post) - I posted about our very own American “Let Them Eat Cake” moment on Facebook, and was suddenly beset with a political conversation I normally don’t see on my humble and puppy-filled feed. But Heil positions this sartorial screw-up (OR IS IT) in the context of FLOTUS’s full day, and reminds us of what we really need to care about right now.
Lauren Smiley: The Post-Millennial Generation Is Here … and they're working at the Museum of Ice Cream (The Atlantic) - I’m on a Smiley binge-read tear right, she’s SO GOOD at putting tech-ish stories of the moment into a broader cultural and compassionate context. And this piece on the staffers that power the “art” project that is the MoIC is kind, delightful, and yet somehow also slightly disturbing.
And finally, Broke-Ass Stuart: Your spirituality is bullshit (SF Examiner) - OK, the headline is pretty clickbait-y, but Stuart’s thesis and impassioned call to action are critical, especially right now: “If the focus of your spirituality is just on personal growth and has nothing to do with helping raise up others, then your spirituality is bullshit.” and “If you’re just focusing on yourself right now, you’re part of the problem. If you’re not expressing your outrage at what’s happening, you’re implicitly condoning it. If you’re not doing something with your time or money or influence, you’re helping the evil bastards win.” As someone who is spending a great deal of time on herself right now, in the hopes of not melting down in sadness into the sea, I'd add a caveat that you have to be a functioning person in order to help, but the call to include the community in your self-care is an important one.
I love you all so much. Be kind to each other, and be kind to yourself, mmkay?