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Physics of the Impossible – Michio Kaku


Physics of the Impossible

A Scientific Exploration into the World of Phasers, Force Fields, Teleportation, and Time Travel

Michio Kaku

Genre: Physics

Price: $2.99

Publish Date: March 11, 2008

Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group

Seller: Penguin Random House LLC

Teleportation, time machines, force fields, and interstellar space ships—the stuff of science fiction or potentially attainable future technologies? Inspired by the fantastic worlds of Star Trek, Star Wars, and Back to the Future , renowned theoretical physicist and bestselling author Michio Kaku takes an informed, serious, and often surprising look at what our current understanding of the universe's physical laws may permit in the near and distant future.Entertaining, informative, and imaginative, Physics of the Impossible probes the very limits of human ingenuity and scientific possibility.

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Physics of the Impossible – Michio Kaku

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Carnival Cruise is being fined millions (again) for massive pollution cover-up

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Carnival Cruise is being fined millions (again) for massive pollution cover-up

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Sustainable Road Trip: a Green Getaway to Carmel, California

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Some people feel that 3D movies offer the ultimate adventure. I beg to differ. A road trip up the Big Sur Coast of California? Now, there’s an actual reality that can put any virtual reality to multi-sensory shame.

While heading north along U.S. Highway 101 through the central California coast, many words come to mind, such as charming, nature, balance, and beauty. But adjectives are one thing and experiencing these qualities firsthand is truly another. There’s nothing quite like navigating the scenic stretch of California from Cambria to Carmel-by-the-Sea. Encompassing a winding, 100-mile span of jaw-dropping chartreuse-colored cliffs, sweeping ocean views, and lush, Cypress tree silhouettes, the voyage along Pacific Coast Highway will leave you breathless.

Since my husband, Ron, and I typically choose the road less traveled, I highly recommend traversing along Highway 101 versus Interstate 5 out of Los Angeles. Yes, this decision will cost you about 30 minutes of extra drive time, depending on traffic, but the memories will be timeless.

Healthy Eats

Just a few of the delicious offerings at the Hummus Bar and Grill in Tarzana, California. Photo: Lisa Beres

We departed Orange County, California, on Friday morning with full intentions to beat the LA traffic. It worked.

But hunger kicked in soon after the 101 merger, so we exited in Tarzana, where we stopped at Hummus Bar and Grill. This Israeli-inspired Middle Eastern-eatery was bustling at lunchtime. And it was quickly clear why. The vast menu offered a variety of vegan and non-vegan entrees and appetizers.

We devoured everything from marinated mushroom hummus, fresh Israeli salad, and tahini-drizzled falafel to fried cauliflower, babaganoush, and Baladi eggplant. Ron didn’t waste any time in ordering the very vegan donut holes with a creamy dipping sauce for dessert. Carnivorous friends, fret not — they offer fish, filet mignon, Kosher food, and kabobs, too.

Green Local Lodging With a German Touch

The Hofsas House hotel offers elegance, charm, and earth-friendly practices in Carmel, California. Photo: Lisa Beres

After we rolled back into our Jeep, bellies stuffed like two Greek grape rolls; we proceeded along our journey to the Big Sur Coast. The six-hour drive had us entering the charming town of Carmel-by-the-Sea at dusk, my favorite time of day; the azure-colored sky coupled with wood-burning fireplace aromas can soothe any soul. We checked into the Hofsas House, a Bavarian-inspired boutique hotel that offers European elegance with the charm of family-owned-and-operated hospitality.

The Hofsas House isn’t just another picturesque hotel in Carmel; the owners take sustainability seriously. The Hofsas House incorporates a rainwater catchment system and provides recycling bins in every room. The city of Carmel is also on the green bandwagon with a ban on Styrofoam, and being the first city on the Monterey Peninsula to ban plastic straws and plastic eating utensils (unless they are biodegradable or recyclable).

Everything about the Hofsas House is cloaked in warmth, including general manager and owner, Carrie Theis. Her family has served up comfort, style, and views of the Pacific Ocean for over 70 years. The Hofsas House is nestled smack dab in the center of town, making this a sustainable choice for lodging. From art galleries, pubs, restaurants, and coffee shops to wine and olive oil tastings, activities are a just a cobblestone’s throw from your room’s Dutch door. The Hofsas House offers 38 uniquely designed, spacious rooms that include fresh ocean air, sweeping views of the pines, free wi-fi, and wood-burning fireplaces in every room. Our room was well-appointed and donned with a king-sized bed, ocean view, and wet bar. You’ll instantly feel welcome and so will your four-legged friends.

Saturday morning, we met with third-generation owner Carrie, to hear tales of how her grandmother founded the Hofsas House and how she has checked in weary travelers since she was a teenager. While we chatted by the lobby’s copper-lined fireplace, we enjoyed a complimentary breakfast of French roast coffee and fresh fruit and muffins from the neighborhood bakery.

The village of Carmel-by-the-Sea offers a wide selection of restaurants and shopping, and quaint, “storybook” architecture. Photo: Lisa Beres

Eco-Friendly Shopping in Carmel

Next, we strolled to the quaint village of Carmel, which boasts a rich history and spectacular beauty. We wandered in and out of shops, including a visit to Eco Carmel, a self-proclaimed “general store for all things earth and people friendly!” We couldn’t agree more. Next, was a visit to Trio Carmel for some truffle oil tasting. (Yes, we left with a bottle of black truffle oil and let’s just say, plain popcorn will never be the same.)

After the oil indulgence, we hit the 5th Avenue Deli to grab a vegan picnic lunch: a salad for myself and veggie wrap for Ron. We proceed to the nearby gates to embark on 17-Mile Drive — a must if you are in the area. Everywhere you turn is a sight for sore eyes, from tranquil deer grazing on the Pebble Beach golf course to seagulls perched on rugged, ocean-lined rocks. The air is fresh, the grass green, and the ocean as blue as nature intended. The untouched beauty and respect for the environment are nowhere more apparent.

View of the Pacific Ocean from the side of 17-Mile Drive on California’s Monterey Peninsula. Photo: Lisa Beres

We proceeded to the at the Inn at Spanish Bay and walked out to the fire pits to enjoy our picnic. Carrie informed us a bagpipe player arrives on the lawn each evening to entertain, but in this case, the early birds did not catch the plaid-skirted worm.

Sustainable Wine Tasting

Author Lisa Beres and her husband Ron sample the wines of Scheid Vineyards.

Late afternoon, we headed back to downtown Carmel to do as any smart tourist would do in wine country — sniff, swish, sip, and savor. First up was the tasting room for Blair Wines, located on the lower level of Carmel Plaza. We met owner, Jeffrey Blair, who made us feel right at home. Jeffrey shared so much knowledge and enthusiasm about wines, and we both agreed that Blair Estate offers some of the best tasting wines we’ve ever had.

Next, we proceeded to the Scheid Vineyards tasting room. While neither of us was familiar with Scheid, it was hard to ignore the vast vineyards on the drive up. But what we didn’t know was that Scheid is a sustainable winery whose eco-efforts include:

The use of screw caps

Maintain the integrity of the wine and prevents loss of product
More consistent seal than cork

Reusable wine bags

Versatile, great for multiple uses
They return bags for new wine orders
Fabric bags reduce the need for paper products

Locally sourced products

Make efforts to sell locally sourced products


Transaction receipts and wine club signups are all paperless


The environmentally friendly pulp wine shippers are recyclable and biodegradable


All empty wine bottles and cardboard cases are recycled

Ocean-Front Dining

The Beach House Restaurant at Lovers Point offers a romantic setting for an excellent meal. Photo courtesy of Beach House at Lovers Point

Saturday night arrived, and so did a romantic visit to nearby Pacific Grove to dine at one of the most picturesque spots you’ll ever witness, The Beach House Restaurant at Lovers Point. If you don’t feel the romance here, candles and chocolates won’t help. The food was superb, the energy lively, and the views — spectacular. While the California-inspired cuisine offers something for everyone, we chose our standard vegan fare by sticking with the starters and proceeded to feast on chilled Castroville artichoke, charred Brussels sprouts (sans the chorizo), and arancini.

The Beach House Restaurant’s chilled Castroville artichoke. Photo courtesy of Beach House at Lovers Point

The night was not-so-young, so we waltzed a block from our hotel to the nearby Hog’s Breath Inn, formerly owned by actor, Clint Eastwood (who also happens to be a former mayor of Carmel). The Hog’s Breath Inn is rich in brick, indoor and outdoor fireplaces, and history. We sat by a cozy indoor fireplace (and tried to ignore the hog mounted on the wall above us). We enjoyed a nightcap, heard stories from the bartender, and reminisced about the day’s adventures.

Lisa and Ron enjoy the fire at Hog’s Breath Inn, Carmel, California

Local Artists

Sunday arrived much too soon, and we had one last stop: the Testerosa Winery tasting room in Carmel Valley Village to meet with local artist, Katrina Kacandes. We met Katrina on a past trip and loved her passion for all things creative, colorful, and Carmel. Her abstract, etheric, and vibrant art incorporates recycled pieces from old gloves to matchboxes and is inspired by the local landscape and ocean. From fairies, fireflies, and fish, Katrina wants you to interpret her pieces the way you see them with your mind’s eye. You can find her work online or locally at the Patricia Qualls Art Gallery in Carmel Valley.

Heading Home

The charming dining room at Café Rustica in Carmel Valley Village. Photo courtesy of Cafe Rustica

We enjoyed a farewell lunch at the oh-so-enchanting Café Rustica in Carmel Valley Village. The beet salad was superb, but the company and ambiance were the true icing on the cake.

It was time to head home and leave this dreamy adventure as a distant memory and sweet reminder. Life is beautiful. Nature is perfect. Beauty is everywhere. No matter what stresses or challenges life throws at you, don’t forget, there is a world of wonder right under your steering wheel ready to be explored, enjoyed, and experienced.

If you haven’t headed outside looking for adventure recently, it may be time to get your motor running. Even if you weren’t born to be wild, it’s time, my friend, to channel your inner nature’s child.

Author Lisa Beres

Feature photo courtesy of Lisa Beres

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Sustainable Road Trip: a Green Getaway to Carmel, California

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How to Fly Without Creating an Ounce of Trash

Air travel and?eco-conscious living are two things not often discussed together. It’s next to impossible to justify the vast amounts of fuel burned when flying and the airline industry is notorious for its wastefulness.

That said, traveling the globe is a part of modern day life. Sometimes, taking an airplane is simply unavoidable. Hopping a flight or two this year? Here are some personal steps you can take to minimize wastefulness.

When you pack

  1. Aim for solid beauty products in zero waste packaging. Think tooth powder, bars of soap, and solid shampoos and conditioners.
  2. Bring multipurpose products. For example, you can use baking soda as a toothpaste, deodorant and laundry detergent!
  3. Avoid buying or bringing disposables like q-tips and plastic razors. There are lots of better zero waste options out there.
  4. Pack a capsule wardrobe built around the essentials. Mix and match, launder frequently-worn items and hang them to dry.

When you arrive at the airport

  1. Bring only a carry-on. Checked bags automatically cause paper waste as they require sticker tags, which cannot be recycled.
  2. Go totally paperless. Download your airline, bus, train and metro line’s travel apps. They’ll allow you to purchase and display tickets from your phone!
  3. Refuse all paper receipts. They’re covered in carcinogenic BPA (gross!) and generate trash you don’t want.
  4. Stash TSA-approved snacks ahead of time so you won’t be tempted to shell it out for a bag of chips in the airport.

When you board

  1. Use your own earbuds to enjoy entertainment so you don’t end up having to purchase or use their plastic disposables.
  2. Say no to straws, napkins and free snacks. Airlines do not recycle! Instead, enjoy your own pre-packed snacks and fill your bottle before you get on the plane.
  3. Bring digital entertainment, rather than buying magazines. Any smartphone should have the capability to download TV shows or books ahead of time.
  4. Set a good example. The more people get used to seeing zero waste behavior around them, the more they’ll be likely to join the movement!

When you land

  1. Choose to carbon offset your flight. It won’t stop global warming, but it’s the best option you have for retroactively reducing your carbon footprint.
  2. Eat at sit-down restaurants rather than fast food joints, and use real plates and silverware.
  3. Carry a lightweight utensil set, to-go container and bottle so that you never have to use plastic disposables for street food while you travel.
  4. Eat and drink local as much as possible. Businesses that strive to source local produce will have a smaller carbon footprint and likely have more sustainable items on offer.
  5. Walk as much as possible. This will help you avoid?unnecessary transport tickets and receipts.
  6. Be mindful of your consumption in hotels. Don’t let your towels and linens be laundered without cause, keep the heat or AC down, and refuse single-use tea bags, water bottles and snacks.

Remember: easy changes like this can make a huge difference in the long run. Be mindful, act intentionally and you’ll be able to fly without creating trash, promise. Have a good flight!

Related Stories:

How to Lead a Nearly Zero Waste Life
How to Keep a Zero Waste Pet
How to Keep Your Holiday Shopping Zero Waste

Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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How to Fly Without Creating an Ounce of Trash

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American Buffalo – Steven Rinella


American Buffalo

In Search of a Lost Icon

Steven Rinella

Genre: Nature

Price: $1.99

Publish Date: December 2, 2008

Publisher: Random House Publishing Group

Seller: Penguin Random House LLC

From the host of the Travel Channel’s “The Wild Within.” A hunt for the American buffalo—an adventurous, fascinating examination of an animal that has haunted the American imagination.   In 2005, Steven Rinella won a lottery permit to hunt for a wild buffalo, or American bison, in the Alaskan wilderness. Despite the odds—there’s only a 2 percent chance of drawing the permit, and fewer than 20 percent of those hunters are successful—Rinella managed to kill a buffalo on a snow-covered mountainside and then raft the meat back to civilization while being trailed by grizzly bears and suffering from hypothermia. Throughout these adventures, Rinella found himself contemplating his own place among the 14,000 years’ worth of buffalo hunters in North America, as well as the buffalo’s place in the American experience. At the time of the Revolutionary War, North America was home to approximately 40 million buffalo, the largest herd of big mammals on the planet, but by the mid-1890s only a few hundred remained. Now that the buffalo is on the verge of a dramatic ecological recovery across the West, Americans are faced with the challenge of how, and if, we can dare to share our land with a beast that is the embodiment of the American wilderness. American Buffalo is a narrative tale of Rinella’s hunt. But beyond that, it is the story of the many ways in which the buffalo has shaped our national identity. Rinella takes us across the continent in search of the buffalo’s past, present, and future: to the Bering Land Bridge, where scientists search for buffalo bones amid artifacts of the New World’s earliest human inhabitants; to buffalo jumps where Native Americans once ran buffalo over cliffs by the thousands; to the Detroit Carbon works, a “bone charcoal” plant that made fortunes in the late 1800s by turning millions of tons of buffalo bones into bone meal, black dye, and fine china; and even to an abattoir turned fashion mecca in Manhattan’s Meatpacking District, where a depressed buffalo named Black Diamond met his fate after serving as the model for the American nickel.  Rinella’s erudition and exuberance, combined with his gift for storytelling, make him the perfect guide for a book that combines outdoor adventure with a quirky blend of facts and observations about history, biology, and the natural world. Both a captivating narrative and a book of environmental and historical significance, American Buffalo tells us as much about ourselves as Americans as it does about the creature who perhaps best of all embodies the American ethos.

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American Buffalo – Steven Rinella

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Trump’s Tweets Threaten His Travel Ban’s Chances in Court

Mother Jones

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President Donald Trump began the week with a barrage of early-morning tweets blasting the courts for blocking his travel ban executive order. But in doing so, he may have just made it more likely that the courts will keep blocking the ban.

These tweets followed upon several from over the weekend about the ban and the terrorist attack in London, including this one from Saturday evening:

In January, Trump signed an executive order banning nationals from seven Muslim-majority countries from entering the United States for 90 days, as well as halting the refugee resettlement program for 120 days (and indefinitely for Syrian refugees). When the courts blocked it, rather than appeal to the Supreme Court, Trump signed a modified version of the order. The new ban repealed the old one, reduced the number of banned countries from seven to six, and added exceptions and waivers. Still, federal courts in Maryland and Hawaii blocked it, and now the Justice Department has appealed to the Supreme Court to have this second version of the ban reinstated.

The biggest question in the litigation over the ban is whether the courts should focus solely on the text of the order or also consider Trump’s comments from the campaign trail, and even during his presidency, to determine whether the order uses national security as a pretext for banning Muslims from the country. The president’s lawyers argue that the courts should focus on the text of the order and defer to the president’s authority over national security. Trump’s tweets Monday morning and over the weekend make it harder for the courts to justify doing that.

The travel ban is supposed to be a temporary remedy until the government can review its vetting procedures. But Trump’s tweets make it appear that the ban itself is his goal. Trump repeatedly and defiantly uses the word “ban” when his administration has instead sought to call it a pause.

The tweets “undermine the government’s best argument—that courts ought not look beyond the four corners of the Executive Order itself,” Stephen Vladeck, an expert on national security and constitutional law at the University of Texas School of Law, says via email. “Whether or not then-Candidate Trump’s statements should matter (a point on which reasonable folks will likely continue to disagree), the more President Trump says while the litigation is ongoing tending to suggest that the Order is pretextual, the harder it is to convince even sympathetic judges and justices that only the text of the Order matters.” And once the courts start looking at the president’s statements, it’s not hard to find ones that raise questions about anti-Muslim motivations.

Even the president’s allies acknowledge his tweets are a problem. George Conway, the husband of top Trump adviser Kellyanne Conway, responded to Trump on Twitter by pointing out that the work of the Office of the Solicitor General—which is defending the travel ban in court—just got harder.

Conway, who recently withdrew his name from consideration for a post at the Justice Department, then followed up to clarify his position.

Trump may soon see his tweets used against him in court. Omar Jadwat, the ACLU attorney who argued the case before the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals, told the Washington Post this morning that the ACLU’s legal team is considering adding Trump’s tweets to its arguments before the Supreme Court. “The tweets really undermine the factual narrative that the president’s lawyers have been trying to put forth, which is that regardless of what the president has actually said in the past, the second ban is kosher if you look at it entirely on its own terms,” Jadwat told the Post.

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Trump’s Tweets Threaten His Travel Ban’s Chances in Court

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Trump’s Lawyers Want the Courts to Ignore His Muslim Ban Comments

Mother Jones

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Donald Trump’s statements about banning Muslims during the presidential campaign are now at the heart of the court battle over his travel ban.

On Monday, the 4th Circuit Court of Appeals held oral arguments on the president’s executive order banning people from six Muslim-majority nations from entering the United States for 90 days. In reviewing the decision of a federal district judge in Maryland, who blocked the ban from going into effect, the judges of the 4th Circuit focused almost exclusively on the question of whether Trump’s campaign pledge to ban Muslims should be taken into consideration when weighing the constitutionality of the travel ban.

In December 2015, then-candidate Trump called for “total and complete shutdown of Muslims entering the United States until our country’s representatives can figure out what is going on.” Trump repeated and stuck by his policy throughout the campaign. His original statement remained on his campaign’s website until sometime Monday, when it disappeared around the time a reporter asked about its continued presence online during the daily White House press briefing.

After his election, Trump swiftly signed an executive order banning individuals from seven Muslim-majority countries entering the country for 90 days. Federal courts blocked the order, and the administration withdrew it and released a second, modified travel ban. This second order applied to six countries—Iraq was taken off the list—and included exceptions for permanent legal residents and current visa-holders. Still, a federal judge in Maryland blocked part of it and another federal judge in Hawaii placed a nationwide injunction on the whole order.

In considering the Maryland judge’s decision, the 4th Circuit zeroed in on the issue of Trump’s statements about banning Muslims. During the first hour of the hearing, Trump’s acting solicitor general, Jeffrey Wall, repeatedly argued that the Maryland judge had relied too heavily on Trump’s campaign statements. He described the ban as merely a handful of statements by the candidate, rather than a central piece of Trump’s campaign, and said the Maryland judge had mistakenly conducted a “psychoanalysis” of the president based on these campaign comments.

Opponents of the ban argue that Trump’s campaign statements are key to understanding the true purpose of the order. Arguing against the travel ban, American Civil Liberties Union attorney Omar Jadwat struggled when the judges pressed him to explain his opposition to the travel ban based just on the text—without taking Trump’s campaign statements into consideration. Some of the judges repeatedly queried Jadwat on whether the ban would still be constitutional if Trump’s comments were not part of the calculation. Jadwat said it would be because it violates the First Amendment by targeting people of a specific religion. In order to fulfill its stated purpose on national security, he argued, it would have applied to a different set of countries than those targeted by the order. “If this order were legitimate and actually doing what it said it was doing, it would do something different,” he said.

But without Trump’s campaign statements targeting Muslims, at least some of the judges did not appear to buy his argument. That’s why he continued to emphasize the thinking behind the travel ban. “The question is, what is the purpose of this policy?” Jadwat asked. He noted that when Trump signed the order, he read aloud its title referring to “foreign terrorist entry” and then added, “We all know what that means.” Jadwat further pointed to the fact that 2015 press release still on Trump’s campaign website—not realizing it had been taken down just hours earlier.

Perhaps the most compelling argument against the ban on Monday came not from the ACLU’s lawyer but from Sally Yates, the former acting attorney general whom Trump fired in January when she refused to have Justice Department lawyers defend the first travel ban in court. Questioned about that decision during a hearing on Capitol Hill on Monday, Yates explained why she believed the ban was unconstitutional—and why the president’s campaign remarks were a key ingredient in that calculation.

“I believed that any argument that we would have to make in its defense would not be grounded in the truth,” she explained, “because to make an argument in its defense we would have to argue that the executive order had nothing to do with religion, that it was not done with an intent to discriminate against Muslims.” But Yates could not ignore the role of religion, she explained, because of what Trump had said about Muslims. “Particularly where we were talking about a fundamental issue of religious freedom—not the interpretation of some arcane statute, but religious freedom—it was appropriate for us to look at the intent behind the president’s actions,” she said. “And the intent is laid out in his statements.”

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Trump’s Lawyers Want the Courts to Ignore His Muslim Ban Comments

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Don’t Blame Tech For Airline Woes

Mother Jones

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Farhad Manjoo says that airline travel sucks and Silicon Valley has made it even worse:

Travel search engines rank airlines based on price rather than friendliness or quality of service. Online check-in, airport kiosks and apps allow airlines to serve customers with fewer and fewer workers. What we are witnessing is the basest, ugliest form of tech-abetted, bottom-seeking capitalism — one concerned with prices and profits above all else, with little regard for quality of service, for friendliness, or even for the dignity of customers.

….What keeps deteriorating are comfort and quality of service for low-end passengers (i.e., most people). Legroom keeps shrinking. Airlines keep tacking on separate fees for amenities we used to consider part of the flight. And customers keep going along with it.

Consumers have shown that they’re willing to put up with an awful lot, including lack of legroom, lack of amenities, mediocre or worse customer service, dirty airplanes and more to save money,” Mr. Harteveldt said. “And the airline industry has evolved to meet that desire” for cheap fares

I’ll give Silicon Valley a pass on this. The flying public has demonstrated conclusively that it cares about only one thing: price. Airlines do their best to charge high prices when they can—usually for late bookings or on routes where they have a monopoly—but most of the time they can’t. So they’ve done everything they can to lower their prices. It’s either that or die.

Nor is it just airlines. Manjoo complains that the whole system of buying an airline ticket is “mercilessly transactional” thanks to tech, but that’s a broad trend. Even the tech companies he celebrates, like Uber and Airbnb, are pretty damn transactional. They aren’t quite up there with airlines, but their single biggest selling point is that they’re cheaper than taxis and hotels. (You think Uber is popular because it’s faster and more convenient? It is. But if price weren’t its paramount feature, Uber wouldn’t continue to lose billions of dollars subsidizing fares.)

I’ve long thought that one of the problems with air travel is the lack of a credible signaling system. If, say, American Airlines was 10 percent more expensive than other carriers, it might be able to make that stick if it truly offered better service. But how do you convince customers of this? You’d have to realign the entire company around service and then spend 20 years building up a reputation. There’s no other way. But who’s willing to risk the life and death of a huge corporation (probably death, let’s be honest) on a 20-year experiment?

So flying sucks because we, the customers, have made it clear that we don’t care. We love to gripe, but we just flatly aren’t willing to pay more for a better experience. Certain individuals (i.e., the 10 percent of the population over six feet tall) are willing to pay for legroom. Some are willing to pay more for extra baggage. Some are willing to pay more for a window seat. But most of us aren’t. If the ticket price on We Care Airlines is $10 more, we click the link for Suck It Up Airlines. We did the same thing before the web too. As usual, the fault lies not in the stars, but in ourselves.

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Don’t Blame Tech For Airline Woes

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Transit ridership is slipping in some big cities.

Democratic Party insiders will vote for a new chair this weekend. The winner will get the tough job of trying to rebuild a damaged party.

Ten people are in the running, but the victor is likely to be one of the top two contenders: Minnesota Rep. Keith Ellison or former Labor Secretary Tom Perez. Ellison backed Bernie Sanders in the Democratic presidential primary last year, and Sanders is backing Ellison in this race. In 2012 and 2015, Ellison and Sanders teamed up to push a bill to end subsidies for fossil fuel companies.

Climate activist (and Grist board member) Bill McKibben argues that Ellison, a progressive who is “from the movement wing,” would help the party regain credibility with young people.

A coalition of millennial leaders endorsed Ellison this week, including a number of activists from climate groups. “We want a chair who will fight to win a democracy for all and overcome the profound crises of our time — from catastrophic climate change to systemic racism, historic economic inequality to perpetual war,” they wrote.

350 Action, the political arm of climate group 350.org, endorsed Ellison earlier this month:

And Jane Kleeb, a prominent anti-Keystone activist and a voting DNC member, is backing Ellison too:

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Transit ridership is slipping in some big cities.

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Trump Immigration Debacle May Cost US Tourism Industry $3 Billion

Mother Jones

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Yesterday I griped about a story that wildly misrepresented the alleged effect of President Trump’s travel ban on the tourism industry. However, it’s worth pointing out that there does seem to be a milder version of the story that’s actually true:

It’s known as the “Trump Slump.” And I know of no reputable travel publication to deny it.

Thus, the prestigious Travel Weekly magazine (as close to an “official” travel publication as they come) has set the decline in foreign tourism at 6.8%….On the web, flight searches for trips heading to the U.S. out of all international locations was recently down by 17%….According to the Global Business Travel Association, in only a single week following announcement of the ban against certain foreign tourists, the activity of business travel declined by nearly $185 million.

International tourism contributes about $100 billion to the US economy each year. If that declines 6.8 percent, that’s $6.8 billion. If you figure the Trump Slump is a temporary thing, maybe it’s more like $3 billion or so.

In other words, not earth shaking on a national level. Still, if Trump’s immigration policies are going to cost us $3 billion, he’d better figure out how he’s planning to make that up. A few hundred jobs at a Carrier plant aren’t going to come close.

Original post:

Trump Immigration Debacle May Cost US Tourism Industry $3 Billion

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