Saturday Links

  • Guinea is a tiny country in West Africa that serves as a case study in just how difficult it can be for a leader (in this case, President Alpha Conde) attempting to turn around a former kleptocracy — especially when an outside mineral company is willing to lie, cheat, and steal to get rich off of it. The article that discusses the situation, by Patrick Keefe in the New Yorker, is all kinds of interesting – if you enjoy learning about sub-Saharan Africa, you have to read it
  • George Packer’s excellent New Yorker article on Silicon Valley and its reticence to engage in government and politics . Packer is almost malicious in his castigation of the valley’s myopic focus on themselves; the most trenchant, searing observation he makes: “It suddenly occurred to me that the hottest tech start-ups are solving all the problems of being twenty years old, with cash on hand, because that’s who thinks them up.”
  • (It’s New Yorker day…) Ryan Lizza again shows that he does some of the best reporting on the internecine conflicts that surround important political moments in DC. This time: immigration reform and the Gang of 8
  • Syrian expat creates system to alert likely potential victims of SCUD attacks by Syrian army. Terrific story

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