More reviews will have to wait

Our four mile walk today has left me a little stiff (I must remember to stretch out when I get home!) not to mention toting a dozen or so books back from the library later. So book reviews wait until tomorrow, but here are some links!
•Some Walgreens stores have a new program that gets pharmacists out from behind their set-aside area. Does it make it easier for them to get distracted? For the theft of drugs? For people to see someone else’s confidential data?
•Comcast insists it’s totally dedicated to net neutrality. And Time-Warner’s CEO has a financial windfall waiting if the merger with Comcast goes through.
•Mapmakers often include fake places and streets to confuse plagiarists. In this case, the fake place became real.
•Your credit score is only one of the ways computers decide whether you’re worth doing business with. Not news to me—I’ve read about similar computer-sorting tricks for a while—but still interesting. And expensive: the price you get online may not be the same as someone else gets.
•The ongoing story of Christian colleges ignoring sexual harassment.
•The Internet Monk discusses the theory that being Christian doesn’t protect you against getting divorce. Apparently the response from some conservatives is that it’s only the half-hearted, not-really Christians who get divorced while those who are strong in their faith stay together. The Monk concludes the evidence doesn’t support this.
•A reminder at how much black inner-city neighborhoods were built by white political and financial manipulation (keeping blacks out of the suburbs). If you want an indepth look, I highly recommend James Loewen’s Sundown Towns.
•A protest against wage theft is not the same as a fight to raise the minimum wage, despite what one National Review writer thinks.
According to writer Amity Shales, the only reason workers want a 40 hour week is to keep their taxes down; if we just slashed taxes, people would happily work 50 or 60 hours. At the link, LGM rips into her argument.
This strikes me as part of the perennial conservative/libertarian push to reframe everything as worker choice. The 40 hour week limits their choice of when to work, child labor laws restrict the freedom of kids to help support the family and so forth. Because once all legal obstacles are swept away, we can negotiate with our corporate employers from a position of complete equality.
Similarly, I read an article recently that projected that in the exciting Future of The Workplace, if workers on a particular shift are overloaded, the company will simply text its off-duty staff offering them a higher wage to come in and help. And I was wondering why the hell a company would bother? I’ve known retail companies that would simply put employees on call when they expected they might need extra people on shift. Or use more precise computer-selected schedules. In the current economy, why offer incentives instead of orders?
•One of the staple claims during the Cold War was that if anything, even budgetary figures for secret programs, was disclosed, it would give The Enemy valuable information. The attitude hasn’t gone away: As Utah struggles with a drought an NSA center claims publicizing how much water it uses (at bargain rates) to cool its computer center would give vital information to The Enemy. As Digby says at the link, how exactly would that work? “Ok, they can’t have more than 278 servers given this much water usage—that’s the one piece we need to launch our cyber-warfare attack!”
•A Montana court case forces one payday lender to pay back hundreds of thousands of dollars because it charged more than state law allowed.
•Defeating the Dragons says purity balls aren’t the pedophilic ritual some writers make them out to be, but they’re horrifying anyway.

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Filed under economics, Politics, Undead sexist cliches

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