Kickoff For April 30, 2018

A quick note of thanks to everyone who reads what I publish in this space each week. The response The Monday Kickoff has been getting is exceeding my expectations. I’m glad you’re finding what I post here interesting and useful. Please share it freely.

And a special thank you to those of you who’ve made small pledges of support. In the last week or three, I appreciate your support. An ff you want to support my work, check the end of this edition to learn how to do that.

With that out of the way, let’s get this Monday started with these links:


The Case of Hong Kong’s Missing Booksellers, wherein we discover the price of dissent under an authoritarian government, even if that dissent is merely selling the wrong (in that government’s eyes) books.

The Left’s Missing Foreign Policy, wherein Aziz Rana explains that on matters of foreign policy the Republicans and Democrats aren’t all that different, and argues that Democratic Party needs a fully developed non-imperial articulation of American foreign policy.

The demise of the nation state, wherein author Rana Dasgupta argues that the nation state, once the cornerstone of many a society and culture, is being fractured and fragmented, and replaced by something less cohesive and more uncertain.


How to Defeat Drought, wherein Israel has a few lessons for conserving and better using water to share with the increasingly parched South African city of Cape Town.

Patriarchs in the making, wherein we discover the works of some 17th century artists which are only now being exposed to the eyes of a global audience.

Creating the Cafe Society I Always Dreamed Of, wherein Iris Martin Cohen explains the joys and pains of creating a new literary salon in New York City.


Blockchain is not only a crappy technology but a bad vision for the future, wherein Kai Stinchcombe argues that not only is blockchain technology worthless and untrustworthy in practice, but it also doesn’t increase trust. In anything.

It’s Time for an RSS Revival, wherein the case is made to revitalize one of the web’s older (and more important) technologies, which has been overlooked in recent years.

Robot cognition requires machines that both think and feel, wherein Luiz Pessosa posits that there’s more to intelligence than just the ability to think. There’s also an emotional component, which sets humans apart from machines and AI.

And that’s it for this Monday. Come back in seven days for more curated links to start off your week.

Scott Nesbitt