The demographics of Brexit

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The Brexit vote wasn't mere xenophobia, it was self-destructive lashing out by people whom the political classes had written off for a generation. Read the rest

The morning after the Brexit vote, Nigel Farage admits money for the NHS was a lie

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In the runup to the Brexit vote, the "Leave" campaign repeatedly argued that the National Health Service could receive £350m/week in funds diverted from the money supposedly remitted by the UK to the EU (in reality, that number is radioactively false). Read the rest

Brexit: a timeline of the coming slow-motion car-crash

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Charlie Stross is in excellent form this morning about the likely outcomes from last night's Brexit vote, hitting all the highlights: collapse of the finance sector when Euro-denominated derivatives trades relocate to an EU state; collapse of the London property market (a big deal as 40% of the UK's national wealth is property in the southeast); sucession risks for Scotland and Northern Ireland; the increased legitimacy of the reactionary right and xenophobia and racism as the "shy UKIPpers" realise (or claim) that they were more numerous than they had believed. Read the rest

Debullshitifying the EU referendum (radio comedy edition)

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BBC Radio 4's sketch comedy programme The Now Show has just posted a special podcast focused on Thursday's EU-UK referendum called The Vote Now Show: EU and Yours (MP3); it's both hilarious and intensely factual, which is a sadly compatible state of affairs. Read the rest

John Oliver on Brexit: the EU is the least-worst option, and racists support Leave

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John Oliver's Brexit bit provides much-needed perspective on the UK-EU referendum: while acknowledging the real problems with the EU, Oliver points out that on the one hand, the Leave side's core arguments are a mishmash of unvarnished, deranged racism and deceptive number-fudging; while the Remain side provides a lot of good to outweigh the bad of EU membership. Read the rest

Terrorist who murdered Jo Cox shouts: "Death to traitors" in court

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Thomas Mair, the terrorist who murdered a UK member of Parliament last week while shouting "Britain First" (the name of a UK neofascist party), was arraigned yesterday; in the dock, he refused to state his name, shouting "Death to traitors, freedom for Britain" instead. Read the rest

Debullshitifying the Brexit numbers

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On the BBC's More or Less podcast (previously), Tim Harford and his team carefully unpick the numerical claims made by both sides in the UK/EU referendum debate. Read the rest

British Pro-EU MP murdered in the street by man shouting "Britain first!"

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Jo Cox was an outspoken, left-leaning Labour MP who supported the "Remain" side in the upcoming referendum on the UK's membership of the European Union. Read the rest

Clement Freud accused of serial sexual abuse of children

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Two women have come forward to accuse Sir Clement Freud, grandson of Sigmund, MP, broadcaster, dogfood spokesman, and children's author of sexually abusing them when they were children, and of rape. Read the rest

Every industry thinks it's special, but only finance gets treated that way

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Economist John Kay, who writes for the Financial Times, delivered a powerful, eminently readable critique of the finance industry last month at the Bank of International Settlements conference. Read the rest

Award-winning short sf film written by an AI is pretty good

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Director Oscar Sharp and AI researcher Ross Goodwin trained a machine-learning system with a huge pile of classic science fiction screenplays and turned it loose to write a short film. What emerged was an enigmatic 9-minute movie called Sunspring, which has just won Sci-Fi London's 48-hour challenge. Read the rest

UK startup offers landlords continuous, deep surveillance of tenants' social media

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Here's Source Assured's pitch: landlords, if you write a requirement for tenants (and prospective tenants) to let us access their social media accounts into your lease/application process, we'll scrape all that data, use an unaccountable system to analyze it, and produce libelous, life-destroying dossiers on them that you can use to discriminate against people who seek shelter, the most fundamental human need after sustenance. Read the rest

UK Parliament votes in Snoopers Charter, now it goes to the House of Lords

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The Members of Parliament voted in favour of the far-ranging, massively invasive spying bill after the Tories agreed to minor improvements, like dropping the requirement for mandatory crypto backdoors if they would be infeasible or expensive to implement. Read the rest

MI5 warning: we're gathering more than we can analyse, and will miss terrorist attacks

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In 2010, the UK spy agency MI5 drafted memos informing top UK officials that its dragnet surveillance programme was gathering more information than it could make sense of, and warning that its indiscriminate approach to surveillance could put Britons at risk when signals about dangerous terror attacks were swamped by the noise of meaningless blips from the general population. Read the rest

Citizen Maths: free, open mathematical literacy for everyone

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Britain faces a major maths challenge. The challenge involves a stock of people and a flow of learners. Read the rest

Britons! The Snoopers Charter is being debated today! Tweet your MP!

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Today, Parliament is debating the Snoopers Charter, a wide-ranging mass-scale domestic surveillance law that allows government agencies to peer into the most intimate details of your life, conscripting internet and technology companies as participants in surveillance, with only the thinnest veneer of checks and balances and accountability for the inevitable abuse. Read the rest

Corbyn pledges to kill TTIP if elected

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TTIP is the farcically secretive, insanely corrupt trade agreement that the US and EU negotiated behind closed doors in parallel with the faltering Trans-Pacific Partnership. Read the rest

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