Quote of the day

"Cryonics is an experiment. So far the control group isn't doing very well"
— Ralph Merkle

MH370: The Vanishing

The loss of Malaysian Airlines flight MH370 revisited. After last week’s almost-persuasive argument that hijackers landed the plane in Kazakhstan, here’s a deep dive into the post-crash investigation which assumes that the plane was lost in the Indian Ocean, and that most of the subsequent mystery was created by the Malaysian government’s attempts to cover up the incompetence of its own air-traffic controllers (6,820 words)

How The Kremlin Benefits From Boris Nemtsov’s Death

Boris Nemtsov was murdered because he was an effective spokesman for a different idea of Russia. He was no direct threat to the Kremlin, but so long as he lived, he reminded Russians that there were alternatives to the ideology and the leadership of Vladimir Putin. He was watched and followed wherever he went, which argues that Russian security services must have been at least complicit in his killing (690 words)

New York In A Nuclear War

A single 800-kiloton nuclear warhead detonated a mile above midtown Manhattan would instantly vaporise the buildings below; a blast wave following one second later would flatten every structure in a three-mile radius; within minutes an unsurvivable firestorm would rage across a seven-mile radius; the winds would carry radioactive fallout far and wide. Russia has 700 such warheads, 30 minutes from Manhattan (1,830 words)

What Is A Trader?

“Hundreds of thousands of people trade short term in America. Almost all of them lose. Almost all of them base their trades on mumbo jumbo things that are completely random. The only constant is the vig they pay to the house, which is often 25% of their average gain or loss on the trade. The chances they’ll end up a winner is less than the parts in a warehouse spontaneously assembling themselves into a beautiful girl” (1,470 words)

The Book Thieves Of London

Reminiscences of a bookseller. “Roy’s speciality was art books. He always made two visits to a shop. During the first he would choose the books he was going to steal. After leaving the shop empty-handed, Roy would wait for half an hour and return when the staff were too busy to spot him. It only took Roy a minute to discretely nudge the pile of books into his huge holdall and he was out of the door before anyone had noticed” (1,120 words)

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