Recent Activity

  • Rachael shared from The Half Has Never Been Told: Slavery and the Making of American Capitalism by Edward E. Baptist
    The world market’s willingness to lend reveals its continued faith in the long-term profitability of slavery. The new system of credit delivery was capillary, as opposed to the arterial system of the 1830s, and so defaults and other breaks in its flow were less catastrophic.
    Note: The 1830s securitization of slaves caused a crash but that didn't stop further attempts.
  • Rachael shared from The Half Has Never Been Told: Slavery and the Making of American Capitalism by Edward E. Baptist
    As late as the 1930s, the Principality of Monaco, which had inherited some Mississippi Union Bank bonds, was still trying to sue Mississippi in the Supreme Court.
    Note: Addendum to previous: big giant crash, states defaulted on slave bonds. Monaco still suing in 1930s!
  • Rachael shared from The Half Has Never Been Told: Slavery and the Making of American Capitalism by Edward E. Baptist
    Although some of the banks were ostensibly chartered to create investment in the state’s infrastructure—including railroads, or, in the case of the New Orleans Gas Light and Banking Company, modern municipal utilities—the major purpose of the splurge was to rush seeds of growth into the fields of southwestern entrepreneurs’ dreams. In the course of a mere four years, from 1833 through 1836, 150,000 enslaved people were moved from the old states to the new. They cleared and planted and harvested millions of new acres, and the US cotton crop doubled in size. Meanwhile, the bonds created...
    Note: A quote from the section that led to that short history.
  • Rachael shared from The Half Has Never Been Told: Slavery and the Making of American Capitalism by Edward E. Baptist
    Thus, in effect, even as Britain was liberating the slaves of its empire, a British bank could now sell an investor a completely commodified slave: not a particular individual who could die or run away, but a bond that was the right to a one-slave-sized slice of a pie made from the income of thousands of slaves.
    Note: Another quote about it. Britain was 'ending' slavery but economically entangled with it.
  • Rachael shared from The Half Has Never Been Told: Slavery and the Making of American Capitalism by Edward E. Baptist
    The tens of thousands of enslaved people named in their documents were still used as collateral mortgaged to a lender—which was now a local bank like the C.A.P.L.—but the banks’ bonds securitized the slave mortgages. Securitization is the pooling of debt from many borrowers so that it can be sold off in uniform chunks, reducing the risks inherent in lending to one person at a time.
    Note: You know those collateralized loans famous in the subprime mortgage crisis? They did it with slaves.
  • Rachael shared from Cinderella Ate My Daughter: Dispatches from the Front Lines of the New Girlie-Girl Culture by Peggy Orenstein
    In a 2002 study, researchers gave two stereotypically masculine toys (a police car and a ball), two stereotypically feminine toys (a doll and a cooking pot), and two neutral toys (a picture book and a stuffed animal) to forty-four male and forty-four female vervet monkeys. The vervets had never seen the items before and were (obviously) unaware of their connotations. The results? Though males and females were similarly drawn to the neutral items, the males gravitated toward the boy toys, while the females went for the doll and—grrr!—the cooking pot.
    Note: This study sounds completely busted.
  • Rachael shared from JavaScript: The Good Parts: The Good Parts by Douglas Crockford
    undefined and NaN are not constants. They are global variables, and you can change their values. That should not be possible, and yet it is.
    Note: undefined and NaN are assignable in Javascript. This pleases me.
  • Rachael shared from Battle Cry of Freedom: The Civil War Era (Oxford History of the United States Book 6) by James M. McPherson
    An editor and a reporter for the New York World, McClellan’s most powerful newspaper, coined a new word with their anonymous pamphlet Miscegenation: The Theory of the Blending of the Races. Pretending to be Republicans, the authors recommended “miscegenation” as a solution of the race problem. This fusion, the pamphlet declared, would particularly “be of infinite service to the Irish.” If the Republicans were re-elected they would prosecute the war to “its final fruit, to the blending of the white and the black.” Although the Democratic press tried to pump up this hoax into a serious...
    Note: Whenever you get outraged about FOX News, etc., remember the same crap happened in the past.
  • Rachael shared from The New Soft War on Women: How the Myth of Female Ascendance Is Hurting Women, Men--and Our Economy by Caryl Rivers, Rosalind C. Barnett
    In 2012 the Bureau of Labor Statistics revealed that, in fact, we’re in the middle of a “mancovery”—men are getting back on their feet while women are slipping backward.1 Between June 2009 and June 2011, women lost close to 300,000 jobs, while men gained more than 800,000.
    Note: That "mancession" narrative was apparently false. Shocking I know.
  • Rachael shared from The New Soft War on Women: How the Myth of Female Ascendance Is Hurting Women, Men--and Our Economy by Caryl Rivers, Rosalind C. Barnett
    Moreover, women running for national office still get asked inappropriate questions like the absurd Fifty Shades of Grey query a journalist put to Senator Kirsten Gillibrand and Republican candidate Wendy Long in their sole debate in the campaign for a New York Senate seat. During a “lightning round” of questions about issues such as prostitution, guns and politics, the two candidates were asked whether they had read Fifty Shades of Grey. The Atlantic’s David A. Graham wrote: “Yes, that’s right, when you get two powerful women together for their one and only political debate, they’re...
    Note: Most ridiculous debate question ever.