Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth

Posts Tagged ‘theft

More Sunday Links!

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…some number pilfered from Aaron Bady!

* Proportion of seats held by women in national parliaments. (via)

“None of my friends are working on nukes anymore,” he says. “This is the most evil place on the planet, and nobody’s talking about it.”

* The fire next time: geoengineering and nationalism.

* To speak of disaster communism is to recognise that if communism is to emerge, it will do so in the anthropocene. As capitalism accelerates climate change, ‘possible’ reforms become utopian and ‘impossible’ revolution becomes realistic. We live in strange times. The bourgeoisie is blasting and ruining not just its world, but the Earth systems which sustain human civilisation. We are going to inherit ruins and abandoned cities, there is only the slightest doubt about that. But we still also know how to build, and to build better.

* What adjuncts do. The difference between large schools and small schools, and between large and small departments, becomes extremely important here. We cannot continue to talk about “academic labor” as if it were only one thing that is the same everywhere.

To that end, it must be remembered that this current crisis in American public higher education and the larger Great Recession did not result from an absolute scarcity of money but rather from an unwillingness to safeguard, manage, and fund some of this country’s most basic public goods.

Another dubious first for America: We now employ as many private security guards as high school teachers — over one million of them, or nearly double their number in 1980.

What Unions No Longer Do.

Workplace Reappropriation: An 8-Point Guide for the Unfulfilled.

* …what happens is that only people who don’t need money are able to live like this.

* Headlines from the apocalypse: Packs of Chihuahuas running loose in Phoenix neighborhood cause concern.

* And America saves the world again.

Thursday Links

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* MOOCs as Neocolonialism: Who Controls Knowledge?

* More College Adjuncts See Strength in Union Numbers.

* Seven of 10 students graduate from college with loans; average debt on the rise.

* A Hard Lesson from Motown: They Will Steal Your Pension.

* Professors to Grad Students: Focus on Studies, Not Wages. Most NCAA Division I athletic departments take subsidies.

* Harvard government professor Harvey Mansfield has long been a critic of grade inflation. He’s developed his own way of trying to combat it: giving students two sets of grades — the one they deserve and the one that shows up on their transcript.

* George Parros, after the concussion.

* Rest in peace, José Esteban Muñoz.

* Most of America’s silent films are lost forever.

* NY Times Runs Op-Ed Asserting Poor People Need More Carbon Pollution.

* Prosecutorial coercion should be outlawed.

In a landmark 2012 U.S. Supreme Court decision on the right to a lawyer during plea bargaining, Justice Anthony Kennedy noted that 95 percent of convicted U.S. criminal defendants enter into a plea bargain and never go to trial. That percentage is even higher for drug defendants, who enter into plea deals in 97 percent of federal cases, according to a new Human Rights Watch report. Prosecutors have had a significant hand in turning the criminal justice system into a system of pleas, wielding in many instances the threat of harsh mandatory minimum prison terms and other sentencing enhancements so severe that defendants may frequently plead guilty simply to avert the high risk. As Human Rights Watch phrased it, prosecutors “force” defendants to plead guilty.

The consequences for those who choose to exercise their Sixth Amendment right to a trial in this system are significant. The average federal drug sentence is three times longer for those who go to trial than for those who plead guilty, at 5 years and 4 months for guilty pleas, and 16 years after trial, the report found…

* And DC has done an impressively terrible job casting Wonder Woman in a film Zack Snyder is certain to ruin anyway. Well done, sirs.

Elsewhere in Capitalist Perfection

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A 2009 study by the Labor Center at the University of California, Los Angeles, found that there was an average of $26 million worth of wage violations each week in Los Angeles.

Written by gerrycanavan

July 21, 2013 at 9:26 am

Tuesday!

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* C21’s book on Debt is finally almost out. My essay draws on the bits of the Polygraph introduction I wrote and is about ecological debt.

* Syllabus minute: I have W.H. Auden envy.

MOOC Completion Rates: The Data.

* How neoliberal universities build their football stadiums.

Some projections showed Athletics might not be able to make payments starting in the 2030s when the debt service balloons. The debt is structured so that for the next 20 years, Cal only needs to make interest payments on the debt. The principal kicks in in the early 2030s, resulting in payments between $24 million and $37 million per year.

Look, if it’s good enough for an idea man who settled out of court on securities fraud, it’s good enough for me.

* Kent State fires adjunct who built their journalism master’s.

* Ian Morris, psychohistorian.

* What If? on The Twitter Archive of Babel. The Twitter Archive of Babel contains the true story of your life, as well as all the stories of all the lives you didn’t lead….

Proud Species Commits Suicide Rather Than Be Driven To Extinction By Humans.

* A People’s History of “Twist and Shout.”

PPP: Russ Feingold Poised For Comeback, Could Top Scott Walker Next Year.

* Michael Chabon: Dreams are useless bodily effluvia. Nicholson Baker: Dreams are all we have.

* You and I are gonna live forever: 72 is the new 30.

* Settling nerd fights of the 1990s today:  Is This the Smoking Gun Proving Deep Space Nine Ripped Off Babylon 5?

* The Star Wars Heresies: Star Wars and William Blake. Tim Morton’s essay in Green Planets has a similar impulse with respect to Avatar.

* And in even more insane mashup news: WWE Keeps Pressure On Glenn Beck.

Friday Night Links, Special ‘Jesus Year’ Edition

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The Rich Are Different from You and Me

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The world’s super-rich have taken advantage of lax tax rules to siphon off at least $21 trillion, and possibly as much as $32tn, from their home countries and hide it abroad – a sum larger than the entire American economy.

Written by gerrycanavan

July 21, 2012 at 6:16 pm

‘The Trick Is to Rob Them in Ways That Are Systematic, Impersonal, and Almost Impossible to Trace to Individual Perpetrators’

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Written by gerrycanavan

May 20, 2012 at 10:42 am

Friday Linkfest

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* The Portal 2s that could have been. I do, I happily admit, want to play all of these.

* Drop everything! My brilliant friend and colleague Melody Jue is now blogging at Philosophy of Water.

* At right is your photo of the day: An aurora over Faskrudsfjordur, Iceland.

* Joss Whedon explains how to write a sequel.

* Steal $80 million in a Ponzi scheme, get 18 months. Steal $4,367 in food stamps, get 3 years.

* “A dozen earthquakes in northeastern Ohio were almost certainly induced by injection of gas-drilling wastewater into the earth,” Ohio oil and gas regulators said today.

* The year without a winter. Things are going to get weirder. But don’t worry: God told James Inhofe global warming is a hoax.

* “I have not heard of another hug”: Janet Bell, Derrick Bell’s widow, speaks out.

* Pat Robertson gets one right: he says we ought to legalize it.

* The Seuss book no one’s bought us (yet): The Seven Lady Godivas: The True Facts Concerning History’s Barest Family.

* Jacob Burak crunches the odds on Russian Roulette. But he’s completely failed to account for the quantum immortality factor.

* Science quantifies the Tina Fey effect.

“When all other variables in the model are held at their mean, those who watched the SNL clip had a 45.4 percent probability of saying that Palin’s nomination made them less likely to vote for McCain,” they write. “This same probability drops to 34 percent among those who saw coverage of the debate through other media. Exposure to the clip had no significant effect on the likelihood of voting for Obama.”

* When Terry Kneiss wins a Showcase Showdown, son, he wins it.

* On chess, gender, and Laszlo Polgar’s Grandmaster Experiment.

* For more than two years, Adrian Schoolcraft secretly recorded every roll call at the 81st Precinct in Brooklyn and captured his superiors urging police officers to do two things in order to manipulate the “stats” that the department is under pressure to produce: Officers were told to arrest people who were doing little more than standing on the street, but they were also encouraged to disregard actual victims of serious crimes who wanted to file reports. I’m shocked, shocked! Followup to this This American Life story.

* The headline reads, “Breakthrough Alzheimer’s treatment stops brain damage in mice.”

* And TPM has today’s sci-fi architecture porn.

Dibs on the Screenplay

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Via Mitch, from last August: ‘Tome raider’ conman jailed for trying to sell stolen Shakespeare manuscript for £2m in bid to bring Cuban showgirl to Britain.

A Ferrari -driving fantasist who tried to make £2million by selling a stolen copy of a rare first collection of Shakespeare’s plays was jailed yesterday.

Raymond Scott, 53, hoped to pay off £90,000 in debts and bring 23-year-old Heidy Rios, a raven-haired exotic dancer he met on holiday in Cuba, to Britain.

He ran up the debts posing as an international jetsetter, wearing designer clothes and driving the yellow supercar, while all the time living on benefits with his mother in Tyne and Wear.

The conman walked into the Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington DC with a copy of the 1623 First Folio and asked for it to be verified as genuine.

The copy had been stolen a decade earlier from Durham University.

Experts at the library, which houses around a third of the world’s 228 surviving copies of the First Folio, found it had been ‘damaged, brutalised and mutilated’ to hide its provenance and called the FBI.

Jailing him for eight years at Newcastle Crown Court, Judge Richard Lowden said: ‘You wanted to fund an extremely ludicrous playboy lifestyle in order to impress a woman.’

Written by gerrycanavan

January 29, 2011 at 12:26 pm

Monday Night

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* Sorry, Hillary; my current SCOTUS bet is Leah Ward Sears, who would be the first African-American woman on the court. She feels like a smart pick that the GOP would have trouble moving against after the Sotomayor debacle. She’d also fulfill the crucially important non-Ivy criterion. I think she’s the one.

* I just hope someone in the White House is reading Scott Lemieux.

* The city of Birmingham was founded in 1871, at the dawn of the Southern industrial boom, for the express purpose of attracting Northern capital — it was even named after a famous British steel town to burnish its entrepreneurial cred. There’s a gruesome irony in it now lying sacked and looted by financial vandals from the North. The destruction of Jefferson County reveals the basic battle plan of these modern barbarians, the way that banks like JP Morgan and Goldman Sachs have systematically set out to pillage towns and cities from Pittsburgh to Athens. These guys aren’t number-crunching whizzes making smart investments; what they do is find suckers in some municipal-finance department, corner them in complex lose-lose deals and flay them alive. Via MetaFilter.

* Probably the end of my Conanblogging: Conan signs a deal with TBS. Here’s some insider details involving George Lopez.

* People with Williams Syndrome lack 26 genes found in a typical human genome. As a result they are inordinately friendly, and experience no social anxiety. Now a new study reveals that they may also be free of racial bias.

* And contra Krugman: Is climate economics a mirage? Via Kevin Drum.

Now, if the economy is going to be a bit more than three times larger, but we are only going to emit 17% of the current level of carbon emissions, then the carbon intensity of the economy – that is the ratio of carbon emitted per dollar of goods and services created, is going to have to be only 5% of the current value. Next you have to figure that there are certain things in an industrial society that are very hard to do without liquid fuel – construction and agricultural machinery come to mind, along with aviation. Relying heavily on biofuels is a very dubious prospect in a world that also needs to feed 9 billion (assumed wealthier) people from its limited agricultural land. So you can probably figure that the residual 5% of carbon emission intensity is all going to go on these kind of specialized uses that are hard to substitute.

Therefore, these goals basically imply that the ordinary living and working of most citizens would be essentially carbon free by 2050. That is in 40 years time…

How to Cheat in Online Poker

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How (and how not) to cheat in in online poker. Related: confessions of a golf hustler. At MetaFilter.

Written by gerrycanavan

December 2, 2008 at 6:01 pm

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