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.

9:03 – Mon 11 October 2021

Susan Collins Is Furious About the Abortion Crisis She Helped Create from VICE News

Questioned over her support for Kavanaugh last month, Collins defended her vote.

When Collins insisted that Kavanaugh wouldn’t overturn Roe, my assumption was—and still is—that he would always be ambiguous enough that Collins could make an argument that there is still a national right to get an abortion…at least as long as she’s useful to the Republican Party. So, he might allow unscientific “heartbeat bans,” or he might allow vigilantes to make civil claims against people who have abortions and the bus driver that let them off near the clinic, but he will never put his name on an opinion that says that laws outright banning abortions are fine…he’ll just write a concurrence opinion for those, with a different explanation.

12:04 – Mon 11 October 2021

Nanay’s language of love was cooking, and I had the blessing of growing up around the most talented and most efficient ‘chef.

Cristeta Comerford

9:05 – Tue 12 October 2021

Dangerous urban heat exposure has tripled since the 1980s, with the poor most at risk from The Conversation

But it is also because the number of people living in dense urban areas has rapidly increased.

The article doesn’t get into it, but it indicates both parts of an upcoming conflict that is going to require new kinds of cities to resolve: We need people to move to urban areas, because servicing urban-dwellers—whether through governmental or corporate means—is significantly easier and cheaper. But cities—whether the classical “walkable” models or the modern “drivable” models—aren’t built with any resilience in mind. One epidemic, one building collapse, one major storm, or one heat wave is all that it takes to make a city unlivable.

12:03 – Tue 12 October 2021

I came to the White House by way of the kitchen. I came from a family of Navy stewards. The first Mariano who served in the United States Navy joined in the 1920s.

Eleanor Mariano

9:04 – Wed 13 October 2021

Implications of the use of artificial intelligence in public governance: A systematic literature review and a research agenda from Montreal AI Ethics Institute

…challenges relating to the availability and acquisition of data, organizational resistance to data sharing, limited in-house talent, complexity in interpreting AI results, ethical challenges, undermining the due process of law and effect on the labor market.

This is a bit sketchy on the details, which makes sense given that it’s mostly a survey of research areas, but it’s still a decent overview of what people in the field—producers and consumers—need to watch for.

12:05 – Wed 13 October 2021

You learn too many lessons in war to continue hating.

Benigno G. Tabora

9:02 – Thu 14 October 2021

Eleven-year-old Aussie’s online magazine showcases women’s sports from Global Voices

It costs the rock-bottom price of 2.00 Australian dollars (1.50 US dollars) and half will be donated to UNICEF Australia’s Empower Girls Through Cricket appeal.

I have to admit that I love a world where children have the resources available to create products that corporations inexplicably refuse to provide.

12:02 – Thu 14 October 2021

There is no longer any doubt that the [Bush] administration committed war crimes. The only question is whether those who ordered torture will be held to account.

Antonio Taguba

9:01 – Fri 15 October 2021

How families are spending the expanded child tax credit from Futurity

If a child experiences poverty, that affects their long-term earnings, their health, their educational attainment, and many other things.

The results are exactly what most people would claim that they want the answers to be: Saving for emergencies, rent, essentials, and a college fund.

See also: We’re Finally Decreasing Child Poverty. Let’s Not Blow It. from OtherWords

Of these 11 naysayers, eight are millionaires.

Like I said, it’s what people claim they want. In reality, many people want to find out that this program was about buying frivolous things, so that they can kill the program.

12:01 – Fri 15 October 2021

These guys all grew up with each other and trusted each other, and the Army brought in replacements they didn’t know, who ordered them to take the hill that another unit had already lost.

Ildefonso Colon Jr.


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.

Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen testified that the company’s algorithms are dangerous — here’s how they can manipulate you from The Conversation

The goal of the algorithms is to maximize engagement by finding out what people like and ranking it at the top of their feeds.

If I had a wider readership, I’d probably take a victory lap for having described this dynamic—including Zuckerberg’s deflection that, at least officially, right-wing material is “bad” for Facebook, because advertisers don’t want to be (directly) associated with it—in one of the first posts on this blog, Social and Anti-Social Media. Unfortunately, I also know that this will be forgotten soon enough, and then the same information will be a huge surprise the next time that there’s evidence that Facebook manipulates users.

Honestly, the most surprising aspect of Haugen’s story is that people still join Facebook with the belief that they’re going to improve the world in any way.

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