As discussed previously, this is my weekly Twitter roundup. Note that tweets of articles generally include header images from the articles, which are not included here unless they happen to be available under a free license. Most are not. But I now add most of my commentary here, where I’m not restricted by the message length.

diagrams showing the division of the day and of the week

I also don’t generally attach pictures to posts with quotations.

9:01 – Mon 27 September 2021

Instacart Workers Are Asking Users to #DeleteInstacart from VICE Motherboard

…demanding a reinstatement of a commission based pay model, the reinstatement of 10 percent default tip, a more transparent system for assigning orders to workers, occupational death benefits, and a rating system that does not punish workers for reasons that are beyond their control, such as inventory issues at a grocery store.

Instacart has become the major player in my area, and like any “gig economy” platform, it’s always a disappointment to do business with them, from their slow website to the complete lack of transparency when it comes to how my ratings can affect the shoppers. The entire gig economy seems like one that should have been immediately overtaken by distributed or federated worker-owned platforms, rather than these Silicon Valley exploitation machines, with Instacart clearly paying for a massive ad campaign specifically to drive up the IPO price and nothing more.

12:04 – Mon 27 September 2021

To turn our backs on people that need help is un-American.

Adriano Espaillat

9:04 – Tue 28 September 2021

Great Recession recovery left out Black families from Futurity

As of 2019, Black households held less than 15% of the net worth of white households.

This is unsurprising—and we’ll probably eventually discover that it was intentional, given that the housing market collapse was driven by exploiting non-white Americans through subprime mortgages—but still worthy of making clear.

12:03 – Tue 28 September 2021

The destiny of the Latino community is interwoven with the destiny of the United States.

Julián Castro

9:02 – Wed 29 September 2021

Retelling indigenous Tamang people’s torment and trauma through sacred seeds, handmade paper and slates from Global Voices

The Tamang women, likewise, would work as nursemaids and wet nurses, while also singing, dancing and entertaining the rulers.

I always enjoy stories about oppressed minority groups finding novel ways to combine the resources at hand with traditional crafts to tell their stories in a way that colonial powers never would have. I’d love to see a world history course taught using collections like this as its source material.

12:02 – Wed 29 September 2021

There was a mystery about it,

As though the echo of many plays

Still lingered in the folds of the curtain,

While phantom figures crouched low in the chairs,

Beating applause with vapor hands.

Mercedes de Acosta

9:05 – Thu 30 September 2021

Reconciling Profit and Morality from OtherWords

These are part of a rising business alternative to the selfish, profiteering ethic of Fortune 500 titans.

One of the ranting posts that I never get around to writing is about how corporate capitalism is the largest bastion of pre-Enlightenment thought, a view of the world where on person—usually a wealthy white man—weilds absolute authority over everything that its organization touches, accountable only through contracts with peers and more powerful sovereigns watching the area, and the alternatives that need more attention.

This article doesn’t cover the same ground, but it at least starts that conversation.

12:05 – Thu 30 September 2021

She fell in love with an extinct volcano.

Anaïs Nin

9:03 – Fri 01 October 2021

Long power outages after disasters aren’t inevitable — but to avoid them, utilities need to think differently from The Conversation

…the goal should be to get people the services that they need, not necessarily to keep the grid up and running…

Something that rarely comes up is also that, if we decentralize utilities with renewable power, we won’t really need to keep a grid running or worry about getting services to people. The people will already have the services, unless the damage was bad enough that they’d probably need to relocate. That relocation and maintaining those locations, then, could be the focus, rather than wasting time trying to get gigawatts of energy to cross hundreds of miles at a moment’s notice without sparking a fire.

12:01 – Fri 01 October 2021

We should flounder hopelessly, like the animals, did we not keep ourselves afloat and direct our course by these intellectual devices. Theory helps us to bear our ignorance of fact.

George Santayana


Because it accidentally became a tradition early on in the life of the blog, here are any additional articles that didn’t fit into the week, but too weird or important to not mention.

The Simplest, Most Effective, and Popular Way to Fund the Jobs Bill from OtherWords

Of course, the Holy Grail of tax reform would be a total elimination of the preferential treatment of capital gains, taxing income from wealth at the same rates as income from wages.

I’d even go further. Because “income from wealth” is purely extractive and provides nothing to the economy that wouldn’t be there if the owner of the wealth didn’t exist, an ideal system would flip the relationship, taxing wages substantially less than taxing interest or investment profits. And as I mentioned just a few weeks ago, progressive taxation should be a smooth curve that eliminates the non-linear utility of money, so that a million dollars after-tax is only a thousand times more useful than a thousand dollars, rather than suddenly putting the owner into an entirely different world of generational wealth.

Credits: Header image is Circular diagrams showing the division of the day and of the week from a manuscript drafted during the Carolingian Dynasty.