Feb. 15, 2018 (THE FERO REPORT)
1. The T-Word: When is an attack terrorism? The Los Angeles Times, Max Abrahams
- “Use of the T-word is arguably straightforward for some tragedies — if, for instance, the perpetrators openly declare their allegiance to the Islamic State. But for a growing number of people, terrorism may seem like the opposite of pornography: They don’t know it when they see it.“
- “There are more than 100 definitions of terrorism, according to the historian Walter Laqueur.”
- “Although definitional consensus remains elusive, political scientists increasingly employ the T-word when three criteria are met.”
- “At least in theory, a violent act is deemed terrorism when it’s  perpetrated by a non-state actor  against a civilian target  for a political goal. That means a lone wolf or larger organization using violence rather than a proper army; a soft target like a church, mosque, synagogue or school rather than a tank or military base; in pursuit of a cause like national self-determination, white supremacy, a caliphate or Communist revolution rather than because of mental health problems, a personal dispute or selfish reasons such as greed.”
2. US media turn to ‘superhero’ Pence to combat Korean Olympic peace threat, FAIR Media Watch, Adam Johnson
- “The [Washington] Post, like The Atlantic, doesn’t bother to interview any South Korean peace activists, or their newly elected left-wing President Moon Jae-in—who was ushered into office with an anti-Trump, pro-unification mandate. Instead, it engages in surface-level moralizing, seeking comment from hawkish Western think tanks like the Lockheed Martin–funded Center for Strategic and International Studies,” Adam Johnson reports.
- Makes you wonder: “It’s hard to think of a better illustration of the concept of cognitive dissonance than the Washington Post unironically referring to Mike Pence as a “superhero” in an article about the dangers of propaganda.”
3. Crypto’s market cap has recovered from a low of $276 billion on February 6 to more than $400 billion as of February 15. Over that same time frame Litecoin has shot up from $124 to $221.
- Surging Litecoin is leading the crypto price recovery, CoinDesk, Omkar Godbole
3. Barstool Sports radio host Patrick Connor “has been fired for sexually inappropriate comments he made about Olympic gold medalist Chloe Kim” on Tuesday, CNN Money’s Ahiza Garcia reports.
- The tipping point: “Her 18th birthday is April 23, and the countdown is on, baby…She’s fine as hell! If she was 18, you wouldn’t be ashamed to say that she’s a little hot piece of ass. And she is. She is adorable. I’m a huge Chloe Kim fan.”
- Patrick Connor’s Twitter statement Wednesday: “In a weird attempt to make people laugh I failed. My comments about @chloekimsnow were more than inappropriate they were lame & gross. I’m truly sorry Chloe. You’ve repped our country so brilliantly. I apologize to my colleagues & the listeners for being a total idiot.”
- Radio host fired for sexual comments about Olympian Chloe Kim, CNN Money, Ahiza Garcia
5. Chinese state-owned chemical firm joins dark money group pouring cash into U.S. elections, The Intercept, Lee Fang
- “On Monday, Wanhua joined the American Chemistry Council, a lobby organization for chemical manufacturers that is unusually aggressive in intervening in U.S. politics.”
- “Wanhua, notably, has pledged to spend over $1 billion on a new plant in Louisiana currently under construction.”
6. Perspective^3: Peter Theil is making moves. Here’s how the same story–Peter Theil is moving his home address and addresses of his investment firms from the Bay to LA–which the WSJ broke, played out in three US news outlets.
- Tech luminary Peter Thiel parts ways with Silicon Valley: “Billionaire investor frustrated with what he sees as an intolerance of conservatism in tech industry; has discussed resigning from Facebook board,” The Wall Street Journal, Douglas MacMillan, Keach Hagey and Deepa Seetharaman
- Peter Thiel is only escaping the liberals in Silicon Valley by moving to Los Angeles: “LA is about as blue as it gets … It’s unlikely that Thiel will encounter a friendlier atmosphere for his conservative views farther south, where the wildly liberal entertainment business is headquartered,” Quartz, Michael J. Coren
- Silicon Valley made Peter Thiel billions, now he leaves it for LA: “Well-known investor reportedly now finds Bay Area ‘intolerant’” Ars Technica, Cyrus Farivar
7. In praise of folly: The secret to brilliance lies in being totally, utterly useless, Quartz, Olivia Goldhill
- “Questioning self-evident truths can, unexpectedly, lead to practical applications”
- But, but, but: “Philosophical thoughts often end up most useful when their usefulness is willfully ignored; when they are pursued for their own sake, rather than with an eye half-focused on some practical end product.”