OUR PICKSU.S. Emergency Communications Are Vulnerable | Conspiracy Theorists Monetize 'Disease X' Misinformation | The Case Against Nationalism, and more

Published 4 March 2024

·  This Lithium Mine May Launch the U.S. to Battery Dominance
The Salton Sea is rich in minerals that could help power electric vehicles. However, environmental experts are still concerned it could have devastating consequences.

·  The Case Against Nationalism
In crucial ways, nationalism is just socialism with different flags and more ethnic chauvinism

·  US Conspiracy Theorists Monetize ‘Disease X’ Misinformation
InfoWars website founder Alex Jones - who has made millions spreading conspiracy theories - claimed on social media that there was a globalist plan to deploy Disease X as a “genocidal kill weapon”

·  U.S. Emergency Communications Are Vulnerable
Communication has become another arena of great power competition, and the United States must harden networks against all kinds of attacks, from kinetic strikes to cyber sabotage.

·  The Golden Age of American Jews Is Ending
Anti-Semitism on the right and the left threatens to bring to a close an unprecedented period of safety and prosperity for Jewish Americans—and demolish the liberal order they helped establish.

·  How to Tackle Truth Decay
The social contract of trust between experts and society is in danger of dissolving. We need to start putting it back together.

This Lithium Mine May Launch the U.S. to Battery Dominance  (Miranda Lipton, Daily Beast)
In the heart of Imperial Valley, California, a project by Australian firm Controlled Thermal Resources (CTR) and Lilac Solutions is setting the stage for a major shift in the availability of lithium in the U.S.—and possibly around the world.
The project takes place in the Salton Sea, a shrinking lake north of the California-Mexico border home to a lithium reserve capable of fulfilling the entirety of the U.S.’s and 40 percent of the world’s projected lithium demand. The reserve has the potential to produce “over 600,000 tons” of lithium resources a year, Rod Colwell, CEO of CTRtold CNBC.
“The U.S. is still in the beginning phase,” Erik Desormeaux, director of application development at energy efficiency firm Energy Recovery, Inc, told The Daily Beast. “Even though a lot of the innovation and battery technology started here, most of the mining, processing, and manufacturing still happens overseas. In the future they’re projecting a lot more lithium demand than supply, which is opening up more opportunities for lithium mining in the U.S..”
The $1.8-billion Hell’s Kitchen lithium-geothermal project, which will use CTR’s lithium extraction plant and Lilac’s ion-exchange technology, will potentially reduce dependency on lithium imports and fuel the growth of electric vehicles. Localizing lithium extraction allows the U.S. to ensure a more secure supply of this critical raw material—reducing dependency on foreign sources. This also aligns with broader goals like achieving energy independence and meeting climate change commitments. Local lithium production can also increase competitiveness of American-made EVs and related technologies on the global market.

The Case Against Nationalism  (Alex Nowrasteh and Ilya Somin, National Affairs)
Nationalism has become a dominant ideology on the American political right and has gained ground in many European countries over the last decade. But this has happened without sufficient attention to the character of nationalism and to the dangers inherent in it — dangers evident both in theory and in practice in this latest iteration of nationalism as well as prior ones. (Cont.)