cars

I Read All 3000 Pages of Ian Fleming’s Groovy 007 Oeuvre

NOTE: This post originally appeared on September 13, 2013. I’m republishing it today for Ian Fleming’s 108th birthday.

Ian FlemingIn May of 2012, I finished a five-month stint of watching all the James Bond movies in order. When I was done, I somehow found myself no less unemployed than when I’d started, so I opted to rectify that the only way I knew how: by reading in order all of Ian Fleming’s 007 books — 12 novels and two short-story collections. It took me over a year, a rate of about one book per month.

I’d read two of Fleming’s stories before — Casino Royale 12 or 13 years ago, and Goldfinger when I was a teenager, from which for some reason I’ve always remembered the sentence, “Bond felt the skin-crawling tickle at the groin that dates from one’s first game of hide and seek in the dark.” — long enough ago that I didn’t know what to expect in terms of quality, theme, character, or anything else.

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How Green is Your Electricity?

A few years back I wrote about how driving an electric car isn’t necessarily the most climate-friendly choice.  That’s in a large part because the electricity used to power those cars is often generated by very carbon-intensive methods. Well today over in IFLScience University of Sydney Professor of Sustainability Research Manfred Lenzen provides a surprising chart of the greenhouse gas emissions of electricity generation technologies. 1From the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Special Report on Renewable Energy Sources and Climate Change Mitigation.

Greenhouse Gas Emissions of Electricity Generation Technologies
Source: IPCC Special Report on Renewable Energy Sources and Climate Change Mitigation

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1. From the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s Special Report on Renewable Energy Sources and Climate Change Mitigation.

I Read Uber’s New Magazine for Drivers So You Don’t Have To

Momentum - The Magazine for Uber PartnersAmerica’s leading pleonexia concern, the evil Objectivist “ride-sharing” service Uber, has issued a glossy, full-color fuck you to its drivers in the form of Momentum, “The Magazine for Uber Partners.” This sub-airline-grade magazine comprises a tight 15 pages, not coincidentally the perfect size for Uber’s exploited non-employees to roll and shove right up their asses.

Uber — whose myriad inequities I’ve chronicled, and whose services you should never, ever engage, even if you’re stuck rideless in the middle of a blizzard today, especially if you’re stuck rideless in the middle of a blizzard today, because the company’s “surge pricing” policy will wrap you in the welcoming warming comfort of a $450 bill for a three-mile ride — has demonstrated its utterly backwards priorities in this latest suck-up to the “driver partners” it abuses.

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This is a 1968 Mercedes-Benz 250S

It didn’t work. I fixed it.

 
I’ve only been trying my hand at car repair for a couple of years, and this is the first car that didn’t run that I brought back to life. It involved removing and rebuilding two carburetors more complexly designed than the toilets in the International Space Station, not to mention replacing the fuel pump and fuel line, all without a garage and without really knowing what I was doing. It also involved several tows while the car was comatose in temporary no parking zones instated by the city of Los Angeles, likely just to spite me.

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Those of Us Who Think Uber is Wrong Continue to be Proven Right

Have I still not convinced you to stop using the customer-gouging, driver-screwing, society-disintegrating ride-sharing outlaw taxi service Uber? If the fact that the company comprises an unethical skeleton skinned with a business model that’s an affront to progressives everywhere and wrapped in a demonic cloak of pure greed isn’t enough to make you delete its app, keep in mind that if you criticize your Uber driver’s route he will cave your skull in with a hammer.

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Three More Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Use Uber

UPDATE, July 16, 2014 – A late-breaking fourth reason: In my hometown of Pittsburgh, Uber decided not to await the results of its application to operate and just go ahead and start illegally doing business. Hit with a cease-and-desist order from a judge, Uber whipped out cosmically massive balls and claimed that its inability to operate in the city constituted a public emergency. Yesterday the Public Utilities Commission publicly suggested that Uber fuck off.

ORIGINAL POST, July 15, 2014:

Uber BADDo you still use “ride-sharing” service Uber despite its business model of dodging every law protecting workers and consumers? Despite its attempt to replace the very system of employment that our economy is built on with one in which corporations don’t actually pay, support, or give half a shit about the people that do their work? And despite my very incisive anti-Uber meme that I worked really hard on? Then consider these three new reasons to immediately delete the Uber app from your phone:

1) Price-gouging during public emergencies is part of Uber’s profit plan.

When passengers complained that the company jacked up prices during snowstorms that hit the Northeast this past winter, resulting in per-mile rates as high as $35 and/or one gonad, Uber Grand Douchebag CEO Travis Kalanick responded by telling customers to either pay up or start training a team of huskies.

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UPDATED! Here are Your Anti-Uber and Anti-Lyft Memes

Ridesharing companies like Lyft and Uber offer cheap transportation in exchange for a loss of fair wages, worker and consumer protections, and public safety. They roll back progress made through decades of fighting and sacrifice by organized labor and social activists. Show your opposition by boycotting the businesses and by sharing these images.

Say No to Uber


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Atlas Lyfted: Oppose For-Profit Ridesharing

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