I’ve been having LOTS of fun writing this newsletter, but I also hope you’re getting value out of it, whether is in the form of an interesting article that changed your perspective on something or made you laugh.
If you are getting value from The Fireside can you please take 1 minute to share it with your friends? It would really mean a lot to me.
Berners-Lee has seen his creation debased by everything from fake news to mass surveillance. But he’s got a plan to fix it.
SQUEEZING the top 1% ought to be the most natural thing in the world for politicians seeking to please the masses. Yet, with few exceptions, today’s populist insurgents are more concerned with immigration and sovereignty than with the top rate of income tax. This disconnect may be more than an oddity.
“We may need a hybrid model in the future which is paradoxically more capitalistic than our capitalism today and perhaps even more socialistic than our communism of yesterday.”
This critique is about democracy in all of its various forms, and covers alienation, the logic of decontextualized decision making, the reduction of ideas to opinions, and the near-universal acceptance of “majority rule.” There is A LOT of anarchist propaganda (dah!) but also a LOT of interesting points.
I’ve read “The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared” (yes, this is the title), a hilarious story of a 100 year old man who throughout his life has met Stalin, Truman, Mao, Kim Jong-Il and played a key role in historical events. I’ve never laughed so much at a book.
I’ve also read “Leaders Eat Last”, by Simon Sinek. If you manage people, you should definitely take a look at it. For everybody else, my notes will probably suffice.
Other things from the interweb
(That may or may not make you look smart at dinner parties)
Amazon is often regarded as a highly disruptive company while in fact, there hasn’t been a single industry, other than bookselling, that Amazon has entered with significant negative repercussions for the incumbents in that industry.
The U.S. conducted 210 atmospheric nuclear tests between 1945 and 1962, with multiple cameras capturing each event at around 2,400 frames per second. These are the declassified films of tests. Terrifying.
Want to convince your company to adopt casual Friday? New research shows that you can change the behavioral norms of a group by creating a smaller sub-group of 25% within it.