Gongol.com Archives: August 2018

Brian Gongol


August 16, 2018

Computers and the Internet Sen. Ben Sasse pushes cyber into the NDAA

Per War on the Rocks: "The relevant section in the NDAA calls for a 13-member bipartisan commission that includes members of Congress, senior executive branch officials, and private citizens...to evaluate 'deterrence, norms-based regimes, and cyber persistence'". We must treat cyberwarfare like the substantial battleground of not just the future, but the present.

Business and Finance The President doesn't know the history of tariffs

To claim that the country was "built on tariffs" is to misunderstand the very nature of taxation. There is nothing "great" about import taxation: It had certain administrative advantages to the young republic because the government found it easier to collect taxes at ports than to staff a bureaucracy for inland revenue. Federalist Paper No. 35 specifically counters the President's ignorant assertion that high tariffs are a "great" thing for America. Protective tariffs have been widely used over time, by a wide variety of countries, but the "protection" they offer is illusory and fleeting at best. Just ask South Korea, which is today paying a heavy price for the consequences of government favoritism paid to particular businesses and industries in the name of economic development.

Threats and Hazards "Stand your ground" turns to manslaughter

Americans need to know the overwhelming importance of restraining ourselves to what is a proportional response

Iowa Iowa City mayor issues letter opposing I-380 widening

The Interstate self-evidently needs to be six lanes between Iowa City and Cedar Rapids. This opposition is based upon pie-in-the-sky opposition to personal vehicles generally, not a reasonable grasp of the situation.

Humor and Good News Penn Jillette has thoughts

A really engaging interview with someone who self-evidently puts a lot of thought into the matter of thinking

The United States of America Forecasting the election

FiveThirtyEight is out with some odds on who will win where. But whatever you think of the forecast, three cheers for their use of data visualization. Tilegrams are absolutely the right way to represent House districts when you're trying to illustrate control of Congress.

Business and Finance Retaliatory tariffs imposed by China are hurting US automakers

The reality of trade wars: The "wins" are imaginary, and the losses are quite real.

Broadcasting The hate mail is fine

Send it if you must. But at least try to be original or funny or thought-provoking. Dull hate mail is just odious. Everyone in the public eye has to assume that 10% of the people are going to hate your guts, no matter what you do...but when that hate isn't made somehow entertaining, it's just tedious.


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