Beyond Labels

A 360° Discussion of Foreign, National and Local Policy Issues

Scott Miller

Jan 24: Demise of Local Newspapers

After taking a week off (the Library is closed for the MLK Federal holiday), we’ll discuss the implications of the declining number of local news outlets (newspapers, etc.) on our society.

Here’s an Atlantic article that brought the topic to the top of our “to do” list: A Secretive Hedge Fund is Gutting Newspapers. (It’s long! Don’t hit “print” unless you really mean to.)

We have almost two weeks to flesh out the topic.

Also: Here’s a link to the transcript/podcast that Marion promised us earlier this week. (She had encouraged us to listen to Ian Bremmer’s “Top Risks” report for 2020.)

Jan 3: Small Modular Reactors

At Steven K’s suggestion, we’ll discuss small modular reactors (SMRs) and their role in combatting climate change. He provided a YouTube link with a brief description of how these systems work and, if I recall correctly, some pros and cons. This particular link isn’t my favorite (I found the presenter distracting) but, through the magic of YouTube’s recommendation technology, there are lots of other SMR video choices available nearby. Here’s another possibility.

I assume we’ll also spend some time more broadly discussing the relative merits of nuclear vs. wind vs. solar power (and, maybe, hydro, etc.).

Dec. 27: Supreme Court Commission

The Presidential Commission on the Supreme Court of the United States submitted its report to the President earlier this month. The Commission was formed in April 2021 to analyze the principal arguments for and against Supreme Court reform.

On Monday, we’ll discuss the report (all 294 pages, so think twice before hitting “Print”) and our own thoughts on the pros and cons of the various reform initiatives evaluated. Here’s a link to the whitehouse.gov page describing the Commission itself.

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