From Culture Machine, a special issue on drone culture. Wazhmah Osman (Temple): Jamming the Simulacrum: On Drones, Virtual Reality, and Real Wars. Lauren Wilcox (Cambridge): Embodying Algorithmic War: Gender, Race, and the Posthuman in Drone Warfare. Harry van der Linden (Butler): Arguments against Drone Warfare with a Focus on the Immorality of Remote Control Killing and “Deadly Surveillance”. The first drone strike: On Nov. 14, 2001, a weapons system designed to defeat Soviets tanks on the plains of Europe appeared in the sky over Kabul, Afghanistan. Killer robots are coming and these people are trying to stop them: Forget about drones, forget about dystopian sci-fi — a terrifying new generation of autonomous weapons is already here. Nuclear-armed drones? They may be closer than you think.

David Cole reviews Drone: Remote Control Warfare by Hugh Gusterson (and more); The Assassination Complex: Inside the Government’s Secret Drone Warfare Program by Jeremy Scahill and the staff of The Intercept; Drones and the Future of Armed Conflict: Ethical, Legal, and Strategic Implications, ed. David Cortright, Rachel Fairhurst, and Kristen Wall; and Drone Wars: Transforming Conflict, Law, and Policy, ed. Peter L. Bergen and Daniel Rothenberg. Pentagon confronts a new threat from ISIS: Exploding drones. U.S. releases rules for airstrike killings of terror suspects. Are there any limits on Obama’s drone war, really? A newly released document reveals that the administration’s rules for drone warfare are full of workarounds and loopholes. Is Obama’s drone war moral? Matt Peterson on the ethics of defensive killing. Heather M. Roff and P.W. Singer on how the next president will decide the fate of killer robots — and the future of war.


Sahan Savas Karatasli (Princeton): The Capitalist World-Economy in the Longue Duree: Changing Modes of the Global Distribution of Wealth, 1500-2008. Abbas J. Ali on global capitalism and developing countries. In 1990, more than 60% of people in East Asia were in extreme poverty — now only 3.5% are. We can reduce extreme global poverty by three-fourths — right now. John Gibson (Waikato): Poverty Measurement: We Know Less Than Policy Makers Realize. How satellite images are helping find the world’s hidden poor. Siavash Saffari (SNU): Can the Subaltern be Heard? Knowledge Production, Representation, and Responsibility in International Development. The colonial legacy of development studies: An excerpt from A Radical History of Development Studies: Individuals, Institutions and Ideologies by Uma Kothari. Deirdre McCloskey on the formula for a richer world: Equality, liberty, justice.


Christian Munthe (Gothenburg): The Black Hole Challenge: Precaution, Existential Risks and the Problem of Knowledge Gaps. Luis L Schenoni (Notre Dame): Subsystemic Unipolarities: South America and Southern Africa. Joshua Hammer on the terrible battle for Mosul. The battle for Mosul: ISIS reportedly using civilians as human shields as thousands attempt to flee. In Europe, the Green Party is a force, while in the U.S., it’s irrelevant — here’s why. “Citizen journalism” is a catastrophe — it’ll only get worse. To the First Lady, with love: Four thank-you notes to Michelle Obama, who has spent the past eight years quietly and confidently changing the course of American history. Dungeons and Dragons is changing how it makes books: “We live in a post Game of Thrones world”. If you’re ever dissed in a hacked email, try to respond like Larry Lessig.


From PS: Political Science and Politics, Justin H. Gross and Kaylee T. Johnson (Mass): Twitter Taunts and Tirades: Negative Campaigning in the Age of Trump; Patrick I. Fisher (Seton Hall): Definitely Not Moralistic: State Political Culture and Support for Donald Trump in the Race for the 2016 Republican Presidential Nomination; and Diana C. Mutz (Penn): Harry Potter and the Deathly Donald. Evangelicals aren’t always conservatives: Members of the Christian Left are 2016’s forgotten values voters. Donald Trump praised Hillary Clinton and Bill Clinton in 2008 NY1 interview. Did right-wing group Citizens United target dementia sufferers for fundraising? The rigged 2000 Florida recount and the path to Donald Trump. Tavis Smiley: Why I fear America could enslave black people again. FiveThirtyHate: Meet Bill Mitchell, the Trump movement’s post-truth, post-math anti-Nate Silver.

America’s voting machines are a disaster in the making: Forget Russian hackers or Donald Trump's fear-mongering about voter fraud — this election could be compromised for another reason entirely. In Ferguson, the seeds of Trump’s defeat: Trump may have risen on the wings of white backlash — but black Americans’ fierce resistance to a candidate they see as racist could spell his defeat. Benjamin Morris on how Evan McMullin could win Utah and the presidency: It’s unlikely, but far from impossible. Joshua Tucker on why John Kasich has a better chance of becoming president than Evan McMullin. Conservatism never fails: Isaac Chotiner interviews Rick Perlstein on how the Republican Party will try to explain away Donald Trump’s disastrous campaign. RNC members agree with Trump: It’s rigged. Yo, where’s my wifi? Josh Marshall on the Julian Assange story.

Benjamin Wittes on a coalition of all democratic forces: Part I — A Political Focus on What’s Truly Important; and Part II — A Government of National Unity. Eric Bates interviews Bernie Sanders on Trump, Clinton, and the future of his movement. Donald Trump is completely obsessed with revenge. Anti-Semitic posts, many from Trump supporters, surge on Twitter. Donald Trump has turned Republican voters against Paul Ryan. Donald Trump can’t stand losing to a girl: He keeps attacking men rather than Hillary Clinton because he’s a sexist who’s incapable of taking a female rival seriously. This is not parody, fuck Trump: Right-wing political activists tried to fool a Brooklyn gallery into showing their pro-Trump art — they screamed censorship when they were found out. Meet the man Donald Trump is trusting to marshal his troops at polling places in November (and more).

Donald Trump isn’t the only enemy on the ballot: He represents much of what’s wrong about American politics, but not all of it — just look at what the Koch brothers are doing in Vermont. Al Gore: “Consider me exhibit A” for why each vote matters. The “climate change election” that never came. Elizabeth Warren: Trump didn’t invent the “rigged election” myth — Republicans did. Larry Diamond on the second-most important vote on Election Day: Maine voters are about to have their say on an experiment that could change the face of democracy in America — and the world. Could President Trump muzzle government workers? Some of Wall Street’s one-percenters are trying to convince themselves that Trump isn’t crazy. “The extremist mullah of the largest madrassa in the country clamps down on free speech at the religious school he runs with an iron fist”.

Can election night be hacked? Why feminists shouldn’t trust Hillary Clinton: Pro-Hillary cheerleading will not advance social justice for women — but keeping the pressure on might do the trick. Silicon Valley confronts its Peter Thiel problem. Confessions of a Trump fact-checker: I spent 33 days fact-checking 253 Donald Trump falsehoods — here’s what I’ve learned. Hillary, don’t blow this golden opportunity to tie Trump to the Republican Party, just as Obama has done. Ali Shames-Dawson on the promises and pitfalls of crucifying Trump: We might thank Trump, after all — as he goes down in flames, he sheds light on the full spectrum of the American demos and the aspects of its functioning that have long worn out their welcome.

When fascism comes to America, it will be adorned with corporate logos — liberal fascism is taking over America and its proponents are corporations. When my grandkids ask me what I did to fight American fascism, I’ll proudly tell them I tweeted a few times.


Kiel Robert Brennan-Marquez (NYU): Private Searches in the Age of Big Data. Titus Stahl (Groningen): Indiscriminate Mass Surveillance and the Public Sphere. Even bugs will be bugged: Exploring the next frontiers in surveillance. The feds can read your email, and you’d never know. A famed hacker is grading thousands of programs — and may revolutionize software in the process. Forget software — now hackers are exploiting physics. Bruce Schneier on why we need to save the Internet from the Internet of Things. Cybersecurity is broken and the hacks are going to just keep coming: “No one in the industry is incentivized to actually fix it”. Computer scientists close in on perfect, hack-proof code. A scheme to encrypt the entire web is actually working. Meet Moxie Marlinspike, the anarchist bringing encryption to all of us.

Zeynep Tufekci (UNC): As the Pirates Become CEOs: The Closing of the Open Internet. Facebook’s sneaky plan to rule over America’s Internet is scary as hell. Tim Berners-Lee is no friend of Facebook: It’s hypocritical of Mark Zuckerberg to sing the praises of the web’s founder when he’s trying to monopolise the Internet. A grand bargain to make tech companies trustworthy: Doctors and lawyers are prohibited from using clients’ information for their own interests, so why aren’t Google and Facebook? The Internet’s own instigator: Carl Malamud’s epic crusade to make public information public has landed him in court. Silicon Valley cozies up to Washington, outspending Wall Street 2-1.


Sebastian Musch (HfJS): The Atomic Priesthood and Nuclear Waste Management: Religion, Sci-fi Literature and the End of Our Civilization. The true scale of nuclear bombs is totally frightening. Ria Misra on where we will grow food after we scorch the Earth. EU commissioner warns of ISIS influx as Iraq steps up Mosul offensive. Being overweight is stigmatized in most countries around the world, but does obsessive talk about excess fat lead to weight reduction — or to cruel, useless shaming? From Jacobin, David Madden and Peter Marcuse on the permanent crisis of housing: Under capitalism, housing is never secure for the working class. Why no one knows about the largest prison strike in U.S. history. Robert L. Bettinger on his book Orderly Anarchy: Sociopolitical Evolution in Aboriginal California.

Women know why Donald Trump’s accusers stayed silent for so long. Donald Trump is running some really insecure email servers. WikiLeaks has revealed documents from Hillary Clinton’s campaign; one discovery so far? Not every email is newsworthy. Right-wing media is already Trumpified — that’s bad news for Trump TV and for the Republican establishment, too. John McCain announced the dawn of a new winner-take-all era in Washington. Chuck Grassley: Senate “can’t just simply stonewall” a Clinton SCOTUS nominee. Curt Schilling planning Senate run against Elizabeth Warren.


From Vox, German Lopez on why Trump’s claims about voter fraud are based on a lie. Since Iowa, Donald Trump has cried “rigged” when he’s losing. The GOP created the “rigged vote” myth — now the party is trying to hide from it. If the election is really rigged, 33 states are rigged by Republicans. This election is being rigged — but not by Democrats: The GOP’s voter-suppression efforts are the real voter fraud. How voting rights are being rigged: David Cole reviews Give Us the Ballot: The Modern Struggle for Voting Rights in America by Ari Berman; and The Great Suppression: Voting Rights, Corporate Cash, and the Conservative Assault on Democracy by Zachary Roth. The media can’t “rig” an election, but it has the power to expose Trump’s lies. Here’s the completely legal way to “rig” an election. Obama’s post-presidency plan: Challenge the GOP’s state-level advantage.

Citizen Pain: After he loses the election, Donald Trump will enter a world of hurt. What happens if Donald Trump is defeated? Democracy depends on the consent of the losers. Donald Trump gives up on reality: “I don’t believe the polls anymore”. When the facts don’t matter, how can democracy survive? This is how a democracy crumbles — not with a bang, but with data trutherism. Tree made famous by George Washington is dead in what is hopefully not a metaphor for American democracy.


Hurst Hannum (Tufts): Reinvigorating Human Rights for the Twenty-First Century. Jeremy Waldron (NYU): Human Rights: Universalism or the Integrity of a Common Enterprise? Kathryn Sikkink (Minnesota): Latin America’s Protagonist Role in Human Rights. Jasper Krommendijk (Radboud): The Domestic Impact of UN Human Rights Treaty Bodies: Bringing Parliaments to the Forefront. Conor A. Gearty on why the Human Rights Act should not be repealed. Jerg Gutmann (Hamburg), Matthias Neuenkirch (Trier), and Florian Neumeier (Marburg): Precision-Guided or Blunt? The Effects of US Economic Sanctions on Human Rights. Reuven S. Avi-Yonah and Gianluca Mazzoni (Michigan): Taxation and Human Rights: A Delicate Balance. Laurence R. Helfer (Duke): Human Rights and Intellectual Property: Mapping an Evolving and Contested Relationship. The introduction to The Human Rights State: Justice Within and Beyond Sovereign Nations by Benjamin Gregg.

From Prospect, Nick Spencer on the Christian origins of human rights: The notion of human rights has increasing political salience, but is it built on sturdy philosophical ground? Samuel Moyn on humanitarianism and human rights and on the end of human rights history. Alex de Waal on writing human rights and getting it wrong. Elizabeth Becker on reporting massive human rights abuses behind a facade.


Sayandeb Chowdhury (Ambedkar): Unveiling the Anthropo(s)cene: Burning Seas, Cinema of Mourning and the Globalisation of Apocalypse. Martha Finnemore (GW) and Duncan B. Hollis (Temple): Constructing Norms for Global Cybersecurity. Global finance leaders contending with anti-trade backlash. “Unseemly and illegitimate”: Laurel Raymond on the egregious conflict at the center of the final presidential debate. Sooner or later, you can be sure, it’ll be our private email, our candid notes to colleagues and friends and children, that end up plastered on digital billboards by some nefarious hacker with an agenda. Ross Perlin reviews Bridge of Words: Esperanto and the Dream of a Universal Language by Esther Schor. Michael Ignatieff leads the Central European University in his wife’s home country. Cable Neuhaus on indie mags, the heart and soul of print.

The cat is out of the bag: Republicans will block anyone Clinton names to the Supreme Court. Francis Wilkinson on why WikiLeaks is politics for cowards: When you don't have an argument, you need a leak. Ryan Lizza on why Trump TV probably won’t happen. Trump TV isn’t coming — it’s already here. The new protesters defying Donald Trump: His customers. Patrick Caldwell on how Trump’s casino bankruptcies screwed his workers out of millions in retirement savings. Peter Thiel’s Silicon Valley friends are doing their best to justify partnership with tech’s biggest Trump backer (and more).


From Political Science and Politics, Kelly Dittmar (Rutgers): Watching Election 2016 with a Gender Lens; Ryan L. Claassen (Kent State) and John Barry Ryan (Stony Brook): Social Desirability, Hidden Biases, and Support for Hillary Clinton; and Leslie Caughell (Virginia Wesleyan): When Playing the Woman Card is Playing Trump: Assessing the Efficacy of Framing Campaigns as Historic. Men are treating 2016 as a “normal” election; women aren’t. Why Michelle Obama is Hillary’s strongest surrogate: The first lady has license to speak out about all the frustration and pain that Trump’s misogyny has caused Clinton and other women. Reminder: Hillary Clinton is extraordinarily popular — if you don’t count white people. Don’t let Trump’s toxic masculinity overshadow Hillary’s historic achievement. A review essay on the anti-Clinton brigade’s four-letter word obsession. Fear of a feminist future: Laurie Penny on how the alt-Right hopes to be saved by the apocalypse.

Robert Costa and Philip Rucker on Hillary Clinton, Paul Ryan and the relationship that could shape Washington. Kevin Drum on why our future is in Paul Ryan’s hands. An unanticipated wave election could hand them the White House and both chambers of Congress — are they prepared to govern? The Clinton agenda: A large margin of victory will be needed for an effective presidency. Republican voters could help usher in an imperial Clinton presidency. Will Clinton move to the right? Liberals are watching. What Hillary Clinton’s hacked Goldman Sachs speech transcripts tell us. Doyle McManus on what the WikiLeaks emails tell us about Hillary Clinton. Hillary Rodham Clinton may be the first feminist president. Expect violent threats: Australia’s first female leader Julia Gillard on public life. Hillary has a power that no one can take away — not even Trump.

Why do Republicans hate America? Their vision of the country is at odds with the reality. Donald Trump reveals evangelical rifts that could shape politics for years. Republicans created the “voter fraud” monster — now it’s tearing their party apart. Voter fraud: It would be literally insane to try to steal an election in the way Donald Trump is alleging. Chris Ashby on why the election is not rigged. Donald Trump’s claims of a “rigged” election have renewed fears of unrest on Election Day — it’s time for Republicans to stand up for our democracy. Donald Trump’s unpatriotic campaign: His promise to make America great again is backed by a threat to burn it down.

Why Trump could still pull off a surprise: You Americans should learn the lesson of the Brexit shocker, and the stunning success of right-wing populists in Austria and France. Jonathan Bernstein on how the polls could be wrong.

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