Avoid Uber and Lyft

XOXO 2019:

We strongly encourage attendees use any of the options above instead of Uber or Lyft. Both companies are actively undermining public transportation and worker protections, refusing to pay their drivers a living wage or benefits, while artificially and unsustainably lowering the cost of rides.

I prefer to walk or cycle. Failing that, I use public transportation for longer distances. Too many cities make this difficult, or dangerous, if not impossible.

On The Reading of Old Books

C.S. Lewis writes in the introduction to Athanasius: On the Incarnation.

It is a good rule, after reading a new book, never to allow yourself another new one till you have read an old one in between. If that is too much for you, you should at least read one old one to every three new ones.

Every age has its own outlook. It is specially good at seeing certain truths and specially liable to make certain mistakes. We all, therefore, need the books that will correct the characteristic mistakes of our own period. And that means the old books.

As the new year begins I have a long list of books to finish which I intend to intersperse with old books. I’ll likely land closer to the one to three ratio, than one to one.

Who is willing to destroy a piece of his own heart?

Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn:

If only it were all so simple! If only there were evil people somewhere insidiously committing evil deeds, and it were necessary only to separate them from the rest of us and destroy them. But the line dividing good and evil cuts through the heart of every human being. And who is willing to destroy a piece of his own heart?

Don't Be Evil

Fred Turner on technological utopianism:

Any utopianism tends to be a totalizing system. It promises a total solution to problems that are always piecemeal. So the problem from my perspective isn’t the technological part of technological utopianism but the utopianism part. … Utopianism, as a whole, is not a helpful approach. Optimism is helpful. But optimism can be partial: it allows room for distress and dismay, it allows room for difference. It’s not, as they used to say in the 1960s, all one all the time.

Technology will not solve all the worlds problems – not social media, not bitcoin – but it will be a component of thoughtful positive change.