May 27, 2023

Posted by orrinj at 12:00 AM


Trump workers moved Mar-a-Lago boxes a day before FBI came for documents ( Devlin Barrett, Josh Dawsey, Spencer S. Hsu and Perry Stein, May 25, 2023, Washington Post)

Two of Donald Trump's employees moved boxes of papers the day before an early June visit by FBI agents and a prosecutor to the former president's Florida home to retrieve classified documents in response to a subpoena -- timing that investigators have come to view as suspicious and an indication of possible obstruction, according to people familiar with the matter.

Trump and his aides also allegedly carried out a "dress rehearsal" for moving sensitive papers even before his office received the May 2022 subpoena, according to the people familiar with the matter who spoke on the condition of anonymity to describe a sensitive ongoing investigation.

Prosecutors in addition have gathered evidence indicating that Trump at times kept classified documents in his office in a place where they were visible and sometimes showed them to others, these people said.

So helpful of Donald to demonstrate exactly the intent required to make this criminal. 

Posted by orrinj at 12:00 AM


Posted by orrinj at 12:00 AM


Freud save AmericaPsychoanalysis is back in vogue with the American left. But is that rejuvenation symbolic of the latter's failure? (Nick Burns, 5/27/23, New Statesman)

Links between psychoanalysis and the US left are not new. After his arrival in the US in 1939, Wilhelm Reich, an early pioneer of radical left psychoanalysis, agitator for sexual liberation and inventor of the "orgone energy accumulator", drew the close attention of writers like Saul Bellow and Norman Mailer. But it was theorists such as the Frankfurt School émigré Herbert Marcuse who helped make Freud one of the lodestars of the American New Left by the 1960s, as a wide array of social movements propelled the left away from an earlier, more exclusive attachment to Marx and historical materialism. [...]

The timing of the recent psychoanalytic turn on the US left is not incidental. The American left is turning to psychoanalysis as it navigates changing conditions on three levels: political, cultural and personal.

In political terms, the position of the American left is an ambivalent one. Even as a huge state-spending drive promises to address climate change, and the Joe Biden administration has stirred exuberant talk of "the death of neoliberalism", a sense of defeat predominates in many circles. At the local level, progressive gains have proved durable, defying predictions to the contrary. Waves of investment by the US government in green energy and infrastructure have kindled hopes for a Green New Deal. But not all see in these developments a recipe for real progress - some see only the temporary, political reallocation of winners in a losing economic game.

The organised left is still reeling from the demise of its national electoral ambitions in the shape of the 2020 Bernie Sanders campaign, followed by a lockdown that scattered the array of left forces accumulated during the previous decade. Recouping strength has proved difficult. A moment of hope for the left during the "hot summer" of 2020 turned to ash as reaction against its "defund the police" slogan reversed the movement's gains.

"As an empirical matter, the left is much more powerful," says Adler-Bell. "But the double gut-punch of Bernie losing the primary and moments later the lockdowns setting in is at the core of this sense of disappointment."

In that disappointment is borne a reflection that seeks explanations beyond the material. Perhaps psychoanalysis is becoming attractive for the same reasons it did in the 1920s and 1930s: a desire to explain why an apparently propitious moment (then, the First World War) did not lead to revolution.

Many of the protagonists in the US left's return to Freud, too, are part of a millennial generation whose young adulthood coincided with the 2010s, a decade that began with Occupy Wall Street and ended with the pandemic. Freud's tragic sensibility seems a match for a generation ageing out of youthful voluntarism and entering middle age - and which has struggled at times to distinguish political from lifestyle concerns.

"Being on the left was something that provided a lot of identity for people in my generation, [the sense] that doing politics was something that feels really good and whatever you do that feels good must be useful and correct," says Adler-Bell. "I think a lot of that is wrong and has been proven so - and thinking with psychoanalysis is helpful for understanding why that might be the case."

Thankfully, our anti-Intellectualism inoculated Americans against Darwin, Marx and Freud

Posted by orrinj at 12:00 AM



In a statement, the University of Massachusetts Amherst announced that electrical engineer Jun Yao and his team had built upon prior research in a new paper in the journal Advanced Materials into what they call the "Air-gen effect." The basic idea? Growing conducive nanofilms out of bacteria that can pull small amounts of electricity from the water vapor in the air.

"The air contains an enormous amount of electricity," Yao said in the school's statement. "Think of a cloud, which is nothing more than a mass of water droplets. Each of those droplets contains a charge, and when conditions are right, the cloud can produce a lightning bolt--but we don't know how to reliably capture electricity from lightning. What we've done is to create a human-built, small-scale cloud that produces electricity for us predictably and continuously so that we can harvest it."

Because of its bacterial foundation, the material's initial discovery in 2020 was heralded as an intriguing new avenue for green energy tech. Yao and his team have continued to explore the concept, and he says they've found the concept is more generalizable than previously believed.

Posted by orrinj at 12:00 AM


Prosecutors in Trump's criminal case say they have recording of Trump and a witness (GRAHAM KATES, MAY 26, 2023 / 5:15 PM / CBS NEWS)

Prosecutors in former President Donald Trump's Manhattan criminal case have released to his attorneys a recording of Trump and a witness, whose identity was not disclosed, according to a document the office made public Friday.

The document, called an automatic discovery form, describes the nature of the charges against a defendant and a broad overview of the evidence that prosecutors will present at Trump's preliminary hearing or at trial. Trump's attorneys and media organizations, including CBS News, had repeatedly requested that such a form be made public in the weeks since Trump's arrest on April 4.

Trump is the first former president in American history to face criminal charges.