Archive for the ‘Look at what I found on the Internet’ Category
* Reminded today of a recent Facebook post from Jonathan Senchyne: …teaching students to be critical of the institutional logics and power structures which many of them aspire to belong to requires you to open space and time for them to mourn these institutions as anchors and meaning-givers in their lives. Only after that can they begin to think about how best to live in the ruins and to think otherwise. See also: David Palumbo-Liu, on sadness.
* “The university hasn’t laid out long-term goals for the MOOCs, and the numbers don’t bode particularly well for the courses’ overall success,” the editorial reads. “We’re confused as to why an unproven and unused educational experiment that isn’t even aimed at UT students is something the system feels they should continue funding.”
* Is Ivan adjuncting on your campus? Be vigilant, administrators! Meanwhile the Brookings Institution proposes we just let the markets eat adjuncts. Sure, people can choose to pay more for cruelty-free adjuncts if they want, but in these tough times…
* What chairs can do for adjuncts, today. Informed and realistic, striking precisely because the suggestions are so small.
* When I first saw it on Twitter I couldn’t believe the New York Times *actually* headlined their Wendy Davis profile “Can Wendy Davis Have It All?”
The deal is this. You’re welcome to this for READINGS if you wish. What I’d ask is that you (or Ms. Rosenbush, whom I respect but fear) not copyedit this like a freshman essay. Idiosyncracies of ital, punctuation, and syntax (“stuff,” “lightbulb” as one word, “i.e.”/”e.g.” without commas after, the colon 4 words after ellipses at the end, etc.) need to be stetted. (A big reason for this is that I want to preserve an oralish, out-loud feel to the remarks so as to protect me from people’s ire at stuff that isn’t expanded on more; for you, the big reason is that I’m not especially psyched to have this run at all, much less to take a blue-skyed 75-degree afternoon futzing with it to bring it into line with your specs, and you should feel obliged and borderline guilty, and I will find a way to harm you or cause you suffering* if you fuck with the mechanics of this piece.
The first PCL this semester will be on Thursday, February 20 at 11AM-12PM, a discussion of season three of the BBC series Sherlock facilitated by English graduate student Ian DeJong. We’l meet in the atrium next to the cafe on the first floor of the law school; we usually just grab a bunch of chairs and form a small circle. If you’re a fan of the show it’d be great to have you. Email gerry DOT canavan AT marquette DOT edu with any questions. The game is on…
* The schedule for the next four weeks of my Cultural Preservation course is up at the course blog. Benjamin! Fight Club! Ani DiFranco! Oh my!
* Black Chicago Residents Are 10 Times More Likely To Be Shot By Police Than White Residents. What could explain it?
* David Graeber: What’s the Point If We Can’t Have Fun?
* That “distressed baby” who Tim Armstrong blamed for benefit cuts? She’s my daughter. Armstrong could have paid for the full “cost” of both the babies directly out of his own salary and still made ten million dollars that year (in base salary).
* I think about the ways to address people who think computers are magic, and there’s lots of them, the ways I mean although there are also lots of people sufficiently baffled by their own phones to presume that physical laws SHIT LIKE TIME AND SPACE don’t apply to digitization projects…
* “The legislation is almost certainly unconstitutional, it’s a bad law, and it reinforces stereotypes about Jewish influence,” said one pro-Israel Democratic strategist familiar with the groups’ thinking. “It’s so bad that AIPAC and ADL oppose it.”
* Renowned science fiction writer Kim Stanley Robinson, author of the award-winning “Mars Trilogy,” will select the winners of a national flash-science fiction contest co-organized by Wisconsin Public Radio’s nationally syndicated show ”To the Best of Our Knowledge” and the Center for the Humanities and Wisconsin Institute for Discovery at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Gates “Beverly Crusher” McFadden will produce the scripts for radio.
* The Truman Show as eldercare: ‘Dementia Village’ – as it has become known — is a place where residents can live a seemingly normal life, but in reality are being watched all the time. Caretakers staff the restaurant, grocery store, hair salon and theater — although the residents don’t always realize they are carers — and are also watching in the residents’ living quarters.
* The prohibition and attempted eradication of drugs can be a nightmare for the climate and environment. Particularly in Latin America, the fight against drug production has led to deforestation, widespread contamination with toxic chemicals, and contributed to a warming climate. Meanwhile: Climate Change Comes for Your Cup of Tea.
* The worst people in the world: Four Long Island workers arrested for running ‘developmentally disabled fight club.’
* Sports Corner! How will news that Michael Sam is gay affect his NFL draft stock? 10 Points About College Hoops All-American Marcus Smart’s Pushing a ‘Fan.’ Why Superfan Jeff Orr Is A Much Bigger Problem For College Basketball Than Marcus Smart. More details on the Raiders’ cheerleaders wage theft suit. Olympic Committee Supports Russia’s Arrest of LGBT Activists. Why the Olympics Are a Lot Like ‘The Hunger Games.’ Detroit’s Unrealized Olympic Dreams. Only six of the previous 19 Winter Olympics host cities would be suitable to host the Games again by the end of this century due to warming temperatures, according to a new analysis. And The George Zimmerman-DMX Fight Has Been Cancelled, So At Least There’s That.
* New York State has roughly 15,000 zombie homes and leads the nation in the time required to foreclose on a home, at almost three years, according to data from RealtyTrac, a company that tracks troubled properties.
* If you’ve been wondering how Mockingjay will handle Philip Seymour Hoffman’s sudden death, here’s your answer.
* Good news: FX will make Redshirts a limited series.
* And can The LEGO Movie really be that good? MetaFilter is on the scene.
* FBI Checks Wrong Box, Places Student on No-Fly List. Just ten years and $4 million later, though, it’s all resolved.
* And a little something for the sports nerds: a new basketball stat.
From coffee shops to college campuses, this country still has plenty of publications dedicated to radical politics. But only one is breathing new life into a far-left movement mostly vanished since FDR dropped dead. It isn’t The Socialist Worker. It’s not The Militant, either. And it isn’t Monthly Review, Political Affairs, World Socialist Website, or Worker’s Vanguard. Rather, the vanguard of revolution—the paper most dedicated to the overthrowing capitalism in the United States today—is none other than The Onion.
* Research shows that if a child discloses sexual abuse, chances are very, very good that no matter how young he or she is, how angry his or her parent is at the accused, how numb or stiff he or she seems discussing it, how willing she or he is to back off from the claim at any one point, how little physical evidence there is, that child is probably telling the truth. Six Reasons Why Dylan Farrow Is Highly Credible.
* Also at Buzzfeed (sorry): What Arbitrary Thing Are You?
* The latest in terrible education reform ideas: the “parent trigger.”
* The latest in weird weather: “frost quakes.”
“You’re funny, I’m interested. You’re not funny, I’m not interested. I have no interest in gender or race or anything like that.”
* So much for my doomsday prepping: The Great Lakes May Be Drying Up.
“That is as bad as anything I’ve ever heard,” he said of the decision to let Weston work with cleaning products. “Not only did they know he was suicidal, they know how he did it, and they gave him the very agent that he’s used to try to commit suicide. That sounds criminal.”
* There’s a new TNI out, on H8.
* Ending the World the Human Way: Why can no one talk about climate change?
* You’ve seen it linked everywhere, but not here! Woody Allen’s Good Name. Don’t Listen to Woody Allen’s Biggest Defender. The Internet Digs Up Woody Allen’s Creepy Child-Loving Past. Woody Allen, My Pen Pal.
* Even the liberal Kevin Drum thinks former senator, former secretary of state Hillary Clinton has no accomplishments to run of president on, unlike (say) Obama when he ran for president, or George W. Bush, or Bill Clinton, or Mitt Romney, or….
* “The entire system is a joke. There is absolutely no living, breathing person with any kind of intellect who believes that a grand jury could consider and vote on 10 complex issues in the period of time that they use to deliberate on hundreds,” Joe Cheshire, a Raleigh attorney who handles criminal cases across North Carolina, told The Charlotte Observer.
* And all perfectly legal: Missouri Executes Man While His Appeal Was Still Pending Before Supreme Court.
* Broken clock watch: Antonin Scalia is… making sense?
* Cook, an Edinburg marksman, was target shooting toward the school from about a mile away when he struck the boys Dec. 12, 2011. The gunshots left Nicholas “Nicko” Tijerina, then 13, paralyzed and Edson Amaro, then 14, with serious internal organ damage.
* From the archives: In praise of Joanne Rowling’s Hermione Granger series. Harry Potter novels renamed.
* I think I’ve done this one before, too, but what the hell: Lynda Barry’s Course Syllabus.
* If It Happened There: The Super Bowl.
* CVS Will Stop Selling Tobacco Products by October. I can’t believe it’s taken this long; it’s shocked me that pharmacies sold cigarettes ever since I worked in one way back in high school.
* Gasp! Marx Was Right!
* Now hanging on the wall of my office: The Life of Thought.
* It’s very important to McDonald’s that you know McNuggets are acceptably gross.
* And the future truly is weird: Woman Gives Birth To Children, Discovers Her Twin Is Actually The Biological Mother, But She Is Technically Her Own Twin.
Other people have already taken up Clay Shirky’s latest more-in-sorrow-than-in-anger piece about how we just can’t afford the university anymore in these tough times. I just wanted to check the math about adjuncts.
I recently saw this pattern in my home institution. Last fall, NYU’s chapter of the American Association of University Professors proposed reducing senior administrative salaries by 25%, alongside a ‘steady conversion’ of non-tenure-track jobs to tenure-track ones ‘at every NYU location’. The former move would save us about $5 million a year. The latter would cost us $250 million.
Now NYU is relatively well off, but we do not have a spare quarter of a billion dollars per annum, not even for a good cause, not even if we sold the mineral rights under Greenwich Village.
The operating budget of NYU in fiscal year 2014 is $6.5 billion. $250 million is a shade under 4% of that number. 4% is a lot to cut out of a budget — you couldn’t do it overnight — but it’s not some impossible goal either. It wouldn’t take a ton of long-term planning and reorganization to cut down 4% over a period of, say, five years. I know a lot of academic units have been made to cut deeper than that in recent years. (UPDATE: See the comments for what the math looks like if you cordon off the hospital funds.)
This seems eminently doable and something the university should absolutely prioritize.
Hilariously, $5 million to $250 million is not that far off from 3.8%; it’s 2%. 2% is a paltry sum, not even worth discussing next to the whole. One sentence later, 3.8% is a king’s ransom we could literally never find even if we sold the mineral rights to Greenwich Village.
* What happened in Atlanta this week is not a matter of Southerners blindsided by unpredictable weather. More than any event I’ve witnessed in two decades of living in and writing about this city, this snowstorm underscores the horrible history of suburban sprawl in the United States and the bad political decisions that drive it.
* Accreditation Standards Should Include Treatment of Adjuncts, Report Says. This has been my revolutionary scheme for a while, glad to see it could actually be feasible…
* “I wouldn’t go so far,” writes Horton of Kincaid’s central thesis that short science fiction exhibits all the signs of exhaustion. “I don’t think that ‘all meaning has been drained from’ the tropes we use, but I do think they are becoming overfamiliar. And I do think that the field of science fiction has to a considerable extent become enamoured with explicitly backward-looking ideas.”
* “These findings suggest that potential harm to faculty-student relationships and academic freedom should not continue to serve as bases for the denial of collective bargaining rights to graduate student employees.”
* Boom: A Journal of California interviews Kim Stanley Robinson.
* My friend Jack Hamilton eulogizes Pete Seeger.
* Stradivarius violin stolen in armed robbery in Milwaukee. Said to be the biggest heist in city history.
* And The State reunites (for a segment anyway)…
* CFP: New Directions in Sherlock.
* Amazing moment: Northwestern University athletes have filed for union representation with the NRLB. Now, I don’t think they’ll get it — so the really interesting question is what happens when they don’t.
* Rabon, a veterinarian, said he believes House Bill 930 is too weak. He said its standards for humane treatment could too easily be interpreted by a judge to apply to livestock as well as pets. “It can’t spill over to the animal husbandry in this state, which is an $80 billion industry – larger than the other top five industries in the state,” he said. “There is a LOT of money involved.”
* Freddie deBoer has a nice demonstration of how statistics don’t always tell you as much as you think.
* Instead of guaranteeing that poor undergraduates can get through college debt-free, the University of Virginia decided it’s going to make low-income students borrow up to $28,000.
* BREAKING: The past isn’t done with you yet.
With lethal-injection drugs in short supply and new questions looming about their effectiveness, lawmakers in some death-penalty states are considering bringing back relics of a more gruesome past: firing squads, electrocutions and gas chambers.
* Five years into his presidency, Obama has finally issued an executive order raising the minimum wage for federal contracts. Can solving climate change be far behind?
* “Academic freedom” is a funny phrase: New York bill to punish ASA over Israel boycott picks up 48 supporters.
* The crisis is over! Colleges are rich again!
* BREAKING: Austerity politics don’t work. No one could have predicted!
* A bit on the nose, don’t you think? Birds Attack Peace Doves Freed From Pope’s Window.
* Let kids be kids: Chaos may reign at Swanson Primary School with children climbing trees, riding skateboards and playing bullrush during playtime, but surprisingly the students don’t cause bedlam, the principal says. The school is actually seeing a drop in bullying, serious injuries and vandalism, while concentration levels in class are increasing.
* And some linkbait I can never resist: 22 Unbelievable Places that are Hard to Believe Really Exist.
* Meanwhile meanwhile, Congress talks adjuncts and adjunctification. I’m sure they’ll come up with a good solution soon.
* Submitted for your approval: An OCR of the MLA JIL list, 1965-2012.
* “Income inequality” has proved a very successful framing for Democrats discussing a massive social problem, so of course the Obama White House is rolling out a much worse one.
* Demographics is destiny: Latinos overwhelmingly want action on climate change.
* The New York Times has the tragic story of a man with a million dollars in his retirement account struggling to scrape by on just $31,500 a month. Truly, there but for the grace of God go we.
* The “okay, fine, let’s abolish all marriages” response to marriage equality is so strange to me. I know things like this happened during the civil rights movement — and one might argue that precisely the same thing has been happening in slow-motion to public education over the last few decades — but it still seems like such a strange, uniquely twenty-first-century temper tantrum.
* Behold, the 90s! The Most Impressive Costumes from Star Trek: TNG’s First 3 Seasons.