For those whose fondest dream is of Mr Tony Blair’s elevation to the ranks of Catholic saints, happy news of his first authenticated miracle. His latest Labour leadership musings came this weekend, when he dismissed support for Jeremy Corbyn as an “Alice in Wonderland fantasy”, but it is to his first intervention that we return today.
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Nothing better illustrates capitalism’s addiction to illogic than the mismatch between Twitter’s workability and its unpopularity with Wall Street
It’s a way of life, an addiction, a mental torture tool for sexist trolls, a news source for journalists, a marketing tool for celebs and a communications medium used by 304 million people every month. But Twitter faces an uncertain future. Its user growth is slowing, its net losses totalled $0.5bn last year – on a turnover of $1.4bn – and it’s in its fifth month without a permanent chief executive.
With its shares now trading below the price they fetched when it floated on the stock exchange, Twitter is seen by some analysts as a likely target for takeover – either by Google or Facebook. Silicon valley analyst Victor Basta last week slammed Twitter’s failure to emulate Facebook, by adding lucrative extra features to its original design, describing Twitter as: “still essentially an overwhelming firehose of crowdsourced data.”
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Paul Mason | The Guardian
The disastrous miscalculation made by the United States in signing a military agreement with Turkey at the expense of the Kurds becomes daily more apparent. In return for the use of Incirlik Air Base just north of the Syrian border, the US betrayed the Syrian Kurds who have so far been its most effective ally against Islamic State (Isis, also known as Daesh). In return for this deal signed on 22 July, the US got greater military cooperation from Turkey, but it swiftly emerged that Ankara’s real target was the Kurds in Turkey, Syria and Iraq. Action against ISIS was almost an afterthought, and it was hit by only three Turkish airstrikes, compared to 300 against the bases of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).
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We’ve had a bit of downtime of late, largely due to having the site redesigned and revamped, so we hope you like the new look! Whilst we’re getting used to our new home, here’s a selection of some of our favourite gig pics taken during the month of August. The photos were taken at FestEVOL, Liverpool’s annual double weekend celebration of new music, hosted for the last time at the much loved Kazimier club which is set to close on New Years Eve.
As well as wonderful performances from local talent such as Lying Bastards, Zu Zu, Sugarmen, Scarlet, Bathymetry, She Drew The Gun, Go Fiasco and Rongo Rongo Stevenage Punks Bad Breeding gave an explosive performance, whilst Bill Ryder Jones ‘s specially commissioned piece with the Immix Ensemble tackled the theme of mental health, depression and isolation quite beautifully.
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Banners at football stadiums in Germany over the weekend via @markito0171
Even the insurance industry is trumpeting the impact of Google’s innovation in driverless vehicles – but there are a few practical potholes
Here’s an interesting parlour game for a wet Sunday afternoon: list the most significant technological innovations of the last two decades. The two items at the top of my list are the smartphone and the Google self-driving car.
The justification for the phone is, I think, obvious: it will become the device via which the vast bulk of humanity connects to the internet. The case for the self-driving car is more conjectural, and the thing that determines your view of it is whether or not you’re a geek. If you are, then the car is a self-evident engineering miracle – a triumph of the combinatorial innovation that the economist W Brian Arthur sees as the essence of technology – by which he means the way in which a number of different, separately evolving, technologies suddenly combine to enable something that was hitherto inconceivable.
While Germany, Canada, US, Norway etc are resettling tens of thousands, UK has resettled just 216 Syrians. Woeful.
The City’s army of rapacious headhunters are already sharpening their pencils and calculating the commissions they could earn for finding the next big job for Stephen Hester.