Alty News: India's "Airpocalypse"; Utah's Medical Cannabis Bill Narrowly Defeated | Buzz Blog

Alty News: India's "Airpocalypse"; Utah's Medical Cannabis Bill Narrowly Defeated

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Conservation groups across the country—including in Utah—are petitioning President Obama to create more national monuments.

Top of the Alty World

"How many more monuments will Obama create?"—High Country News

India now claims 13 of the 20 dirtiest cities in the world for air pollution.—The Diplomat

President Obama's speech in Salem gave him the chance to redefine American Exceptionalism—Slate

Snoop Dogg wants you to divest from the gun industry.—Rolling Stone


Top of Alty Utah

The Medical Cannabis bill dies on the senate floor by a narrow vote.—Utah Political Capitol

Utah Politico Hub explains how the last few days of the session will work.—Utah Politico Hub

A teacher income incentives bill excludes music educators.—Salt Lake City Weekly

In a recent filing, Rocky Mountain Power describes environmental and health values of solar energy as "speculative" and based on "best guessing."—Salt Lake City Weekly

Rantosphere

The Atlantic challenges conservatives for for their muted response to the recent report on the report on Ferguson's police abuses. 

No city in America better illustrates government run amok than Ferguson, Missouri. Libertarians have long excoriated the city. Less so, movement conservatives. Most are ambivalent about the abuses. Some have even defended Ferguson officials. Why haven't conservatives seized this opportunity to highlight government-caused damage and to show blacks, Ferguson's most frequently abused demographic, that the right is intent on protecting everyone's civil rights?

Some critics of movement conservatism believe that the answer is simply racism, but that label obscures more than it reveals. Many conservative institutions and commentators reject the principles of white supremacy, favor equal rights, and bear no personal animosity toward black people. Yet many of these same people and institutions tend to ignore, downplay, and de-prioritize fixing government abuses when the victims are black, a tendency underscored by the reaction to the Ferguson report.—The Atlantic

The Long View

Wired takes a look at the activist groups smuggling Western pop culture into North Korea.

Over the past few years, Kang’s organization has become the largest in a movement of political groups who routinely smuggle data into North Korea. NKSC alone annually injects around 3,000 USB drives filled with foreign movies, music, and ebooks. Kang’s goal, as wildly optimistic as it may sound, is nothing less than the overthrow of the North Korean government. He believes that the Kim dynasty’s three-generation stranglehold on the North Korean people—and its draconian restriction on almost any information about the world beyond its borders—will ultimately be broken not by drone strikes or caravans of Humvees but by a gradual, guerrilla invasion of thumb drives filled with bootleg episodes of Friends and Judd Apatow comedies.

Kang likens the USB sticks to the red pill from The Matrix: a mind-altering treatment that has the power to shatter a world of illusions. “When North Koreans watch Desperate Housewives, they see that Americans aren’t all war-loving imperialists,” Kang says. “They’re just people having affairs or whatever. They see the leisure, the freedom. They realize that this isn’t the enemy; it’s what they want for themselves. It cancels out everything they’ve been told. And when that happens, it starts a revolution in their mind.”—Wired


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