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✊🏙 Amazon Go & retail apocalypse 🛍 CA high-speed rail cost overrun 🚅 Trouble with Sydney's trains 🇦🇺

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Hey urbanists! Amazon Go, the new retail concept where you get to wait in line outside instead of at
 
January 28 · Issue #18 · View online
Radical Urbanist
Hey urbanists!
Amazon Go, the new retail concept where you get to wait in line outside instead of at the cash register, opened to the public this week. There’s no question that retail is changing, and the debate over Amazon Go quickly morphs into the larger debate about automation: who benefits? Will workers really be better off if their jobs are automated and corporations capture the resulting economic benefits provided by robots and AI?
Trains are also a big focus of this issue. After California’s high-speed rail project announced a cost overrun, much of the media and conservatives pounced to question whether it should move forward. Sydney, Australia is also having trouble with its trains after years of underinvestment.
Finally, I want to call attention to a fantastic writer who died this week. Ursula K. Le Guin leaned on anthropology to build fantasy worlds through which to apply a feminist, anarchist, and anti-colonial critique to our societies. She showed that the “science” in science fiction can also refer to social science, and became one of the most accomplished writers of the twentieth century.
We live in capitalism. Its power seems inescapable. So did the divine right of kings. Any human power can be resisted and changed by human beings. Resistance and change often begin in art, and very often in our art - the art of words.
For more on Le Guin and her work, see this Guardian piece. She will be missed, but her words will not be forgotten.
Paris

⚠️ Amazon Go and the retail apocalypse
Amazon Go and the Future Amazon Go and the Future
Tsunami of retail store closings expected to hit US, hurt malls
The US retail industry is hemorrhaging jobs – and it's hitting women hardest
🚅 Cost overrun for CA high-speed rail
California bullet train cost surges by $2.8 billion: 'Worst-case scenario has happened' California bullet train cost surges by $2.8 billion: 'Worst-case scenario has happened'
High-Speed Rail Cost Overrun Reporting Raises Questions of Media Bias
The U.S. Gets Less Subway for Its Money Than Its Peers
🇦🇺 Looking at Sydney's train crisis
This is how Sydney's transport system has gone off the rails This is how Sydney's transport system has gone off the rails
The trains in Sydney are collapsing into chaos, while the government yells about the union menace
✊❤️ Thanks for reading, and make sure to follow me on Twitter, Medium, or Instagram for even more!
Ursula K. Le Guin, 1929-2018 💔
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