Things I loved this week: November 24, 2019 edition

Each week I share a few things that I enjoyed and found meaningful. I hope you enjoy, and let me know what you loved this week!

“Online Cesspool Got You Down? You Can Clean It Up, for a Price”

This is a wonderful article from the New York Times’ special issue (a delightful blast from the past!) about the future of the Internet. This piece is about the growing inequality online, and how the web has been stratified into two tiers: one for the haves, and one for the have-nots.

Impeachment, Explained

Vox Media’s podcast continues its thought-provoking look at what’s going on in our troubled and divided nation. In the latest episode, “What’s wrong with the Republican Party?”, our host Ezra Klein expresses what appears to be the general outlook of many conservative voters and members of Congress: “Better to have a corrupt Republican [in the White House] than a Democrat of any kind.”

Unfortunately, I am all too familiar with this “lesser evil” rationalization, and the slippery slope it entails. This episode attempts to diagnose what has gone wrong with the Republican Party. Maybe by better understanding the problem, we can find a solution that will finally unite our country under a common wisdom.

Arguably

These collected essays of Christopher Hitchens are artfully and ingeniously written. Hitchens was a master of the English language. That said, I wish I was reading instead of listening, as the audio is hard to follow, even though the narrator is strong (alas, Hitchens himself does not read this book). Hitch makes liberal use of metaphor, French phrases, and a poetic quality that I think is best enjoyed in print.

DuckDuckGo

Ive been using this privacy-focused search engine for several weeks now, and so far it has been a great experience. Sometimes I do find myself returning to Google when I suspect a search is not dredging up as much as I want, but overall I’m very happy. DuckDuckGo uses keyword-based ads, instead of targeted ads, and it doesn’t store your personal data. They take privacy very seriously.

I also highly recommend their privacy newsletter, which explains a lot of important privacy concepts, links to interesting articles, and provides helpful tips on staying more private online.