RUSSELL MOKHIBER—Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg has admitted that “it’s apparent that in both flights, the MCAS activated in response to erroneous angle of attack information.”And Boeing kept pilots in the dark about potential failure modes that could result in a taxing mental and physical struggle in the cockpit with just seconds to execute correct decisions and maneuvers.Pilots complained saying that it is “unconscionable” that Boeing, the Federal Aviation Administration and the airlines had pilots flying without adequate training or sufficient documentation about the MCAS system, that the flight manual “is inadequate and almost criminally insufficient.”Denis Tajer, an American Airlines pilot and spokesperson for the pilots’ union, the Allied Pilots Association, said that the MCAS “was designed in a hideous manner.”
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WJ ASTORE—Like Russia, China has a single aircraft carrier, though there are plans to build one or two more. Even if China does, the U.S. will still maintain an enormous lead on its “great-power” rivals. Some rivalry!The U.S. Navy currently has eleven fleet aircraft carriers, with two new ones under construction and a further two on order. Indeed, to make space for all these new carriers, the Navy has plans to retire CVN-75, Harry S Truman, 20 years early, an idea even Congress finds silly.
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EMILE SCHEPERS—Agent provocateur tactics surfaced again during the protests against the Iraq War, and in the “Occupy” movement. In each case, glib charismatic strangers wormed their way into protest organizations, and then entrapped inexperienced young radicals to get involved in plans, which were sometimes really just talk, to engage in violence. A typical case is that of the “Cleveland bomb plot” of 2012. Another is the San Francisco Mission District riot of May 2012, when a mysterious black-clad contingent hijacked part of a peaceful “Occupy” demonstration and turned it toward random violence. In both cases, the purpose of the provocateurs was to discredit the movement in the eyes of the public, which otherwise might have been receptive to Occupy’s “99 percent versus one percent” message.
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RAMIN MAZAHERI—It seems amusing and hypocritical that a book about socialism is only being sold on Amazon, which is perhaps the most cutthroat capitalist corporation today. All I can say is: we tried. Amazon has bought up so many parts of the modern publishing industry, like CreateSpace, that there simply are no real options for us. We are looking, though.Bottom line: the most common phrase heard among leftist authors is, “just get the ideas out there”, because leftist ideas are so harshly repressed in the West, both formally and informally. And it’s not like we’re in this for the money.