Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth

Posts Tagged ‘Alan Moore

Friday Night Links!

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* Don’t miss the descriptions for the upcoming English courses at Marquette (including my new courses on “Utopia in America” and Moore and Gibbons’s “Watchmen”).

Preparing for Coronavirus to Strike the U.S. U.S. Health Workers Responding to Coronavirus Lacked Training and Protective Gear. Coronavirus Reappears in Discharged Patients, Raising Questions in Containment Fight. Coronavirus and the election. The pandemic must be revenue neutral. This week’s stock market meltdown, explained. You’re only as healthy as the least-insured person in society. Okay, now I’m worried.

By the way, the wall-to-wall coronavirus coverage is what coverage of climate collapse would look like if giant corporations didn’t stand to lose financially from drastic action to protect the climate and save our lives.

Democratic Leaders Willing to Risk Party Damage to Stop Bernie Sanders. Democrats float Sherrod Brown as ‘white knight’ 2020 nominee, Michelle Obama as vice president. I’m sure he has our best interests at heart. The obvious folly of a white knight convention candidate. Get excited.

* Truly disgusting smear job on Andrew Walz, the only candidate who can beat Trump.

Graduate Student Strikes Are Spreading in California. Not over yet at UCSC.

The Lies Graduate Programs Tell Themselves.

Heathrow airport expansion ruled unlawful on climate change grounds.

The typical US worker can no longer afford a family on a year’s salary, showing the dire state of America’s middle class.

Deputies in Orange County wrote false reports about their collection and booking of evidence, according to internal audits kept secret for months.

* Since chronic restriction of sleep to 6 h or less per night produced cognitive performance deficits equivalent to up to 2 nights of total sleep deprivation, it appears that even relatively moderate sleep restriction can seriously impair waking neurobehavioral functions in healthy adults. Sleepiness ratings suggest that subjects were largely unaware of these increasing cognitive deficits, which may explain why the impact of chronic sleep restriction on waking cognitive functions is often assumed to be benign.

New study says student evaluations of teaching are still deeply flawed measures of teaching effectiveness, even when we assume they are unbiased and reliable.

Fast-and-loose culture of esports is upending once staid world of chess.

* Teach the controversy.

* I have questions. A lot of questions.

A dirty secret: you can only be a writer if you can afford it.

Video-game therapy may help treat ADHD, study finds.

* ugh x-men is bad again

* …and then there was no one left to speak for me.

Upcoming English Courses at Marquette! “Utopia in America” and “Watchmen”

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Descriptions for the upcoming courses for Fall 2020 are up at the English department website. Here are mine:

ENGLISH 3000: CRITICAL PRACTICES AND PROCESSES IN LITERARY STUDIES

101 MWF 11:00-11:50 Professor Gerry Canavan

Course Title:  Utopia in America

Course Description: 2020 marks the 505th anniversary of Sir Thomas More’s Utopia, which inaugurated a genre of political and social speculation that continues to structure our imagination of what is possible. This course serves as an entry point for advanced study in the English discipline, using depictions of political utopias from antiquity to the present as a way to explore how both literature and literary criticism do their work. We will study utopia in canonical historical literature, in contemporary pop culture, and in the presidential election, as well as utopian critical theory from major thinkers like Fredric Jameson, Donna Haraway, Margaret Atwood, and Ursula K. Le Guin — but the major task before us will be exploring the role utopian, quasi-utopian, dystopian, and downright anti-utopian figurations have played in the work of major authors of the 20th century, among them Gabriel García Márquez, Vladimir Nabokov, Flannery O’Connor, Toni Morrison, Octavia E. Butler, and Philip K. Dick.

Assignments: Class participation, including individual and group presentations; discussion posts; three papers. Students will also construct their own utopian manifesto.

ENGLISH 4717/5717: COMICS AND GRAPHIC NARRATIVE

101 MWF 12:00-12:50 Professor Gerry Canavan

Course Title:  Watchmen

Course Description: This course surveys the history, reception, and artistic form of comics and graphic narrative in the United States, with primary exploration of a single comic miniseries that has had a massive influence on the comics industry and on the way we think about superheroes: Alan Moore and David Gibbons’s Watchmen (1986-1987)This semester ENGLISH 4717 will function almost like a single-novel “Text in Context” course; after grounding ourselves in the pre-1980s history of American superhero comics over the first few weeks of the course, we will focusing almost exclusively on Watchmen and its long afterlife in prequel comics, sequel comics, parody comics, homages, critiques, film adaptations, and, most recently, the critically acclaimed HBO sequel series (2019-2020). What has made Watchmen so beloved, so controversial, and so very influential on the larger superhero-industrial-entertainment complex? Why has DC Comics returned to Watchmen again and again, even as one of its original creators has distanced himself further and further from the work? What have different creators done, or tried to do, with the complex but self-contained narrative framework originally constructed by Moore and Gibbons? With superheroes and superhero media more globally hegemonic than ever before, what might Watchmen still have to say to us today?

Assignments: Class participation, including individual and group presentations; weekly reading journal; discussion posts; several out-of-class film screenings; one long seminar paper, several shorter papers, or creative/curational project

Written by gerrycanavan

February 28, 2020 at 4:31 pm

*ALL* Your Tuesday Links!

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* CFP: Climates of Crisis: Life, Power, and Planetary Justice in the Capitalocene (Binghamton, 7-8 February 2020). CFP: ASAP/Journal special issue on speculation. CFP: CFP: Caliban no. 63 “Dynamics of Collapse in Fantasy, the Fantastic & SF.” CFP: Extrapolating Nostalgia: Special issue of Science Fiction Studies. CFP: Childhood and Time.

* SFRA Review 330 is out!

Mainstream economists nowadays might not be particularly good at predicting financial crashes, facilitating general prosperity, or coming up with models for preventing climate change, but when it comes to establishing themselves in positions of intellectual authority, unaffected by such failings, their success is unparalleled. One would have to look at the history of religions to find anything like it. To this day, economics continues to be taught not as a story of arguments—not, like any other social science, as a welter of often warring theoretical perspectives—but rather as something more like physics, the gradual realization of universal, unimpeachable mathematical truths.

* I’ve been digging the new Watchmen show, completely despite my own expectations and intentions. I’ve even tweeted about it a few times, in this thread and then once or twice more. A few think pieces after this week’s game-changing episode. which you should see before you read: HBO’s ‘Watchmen’ tackles criminal justice and race, but can’t see past the hero black cop trope. The Timeliness of Watchmen. Watchmen dares to imagine a [SPOILER SPOILER SPOILER]. I like the show so much I even like listening to Struggle Session dunk on it.

The other tweet’s deleted now, but someone pointed out that this is very clearly the brief for the HBO show.

 

Hopepunk and Solarpunk: On Climate Narratives That Go Beyond the Apocalypse.

* The Nearly Forgotten Art of Old Sci-Fi Books.

Sucker bet (a thought experiment).

* Yes we can! Evers signs bill making it a felony to trespass on pipelines.

The latest Keystone Pipeline oil leak is almost 10 times worse than initially thought.

* The Gulf Stream is slowing down. That could mean rising seas and a hotter Florida.

* 82 Days Underwater.

Ramping up Repression as the Australian Continent Burns.

Generation snowflake: Frozen II and the quest for climate justice. Frozen 2’s Bizarre Storyline About Reparations, Explained. Climate Change Is So Real There’s A New Pokémon Based On Dead Coral. “OK boomer” isn’t just about the past. It’s about our apocalyptic future. Wherever a rich person is abusing children — I’ll be there.

Ten Arguments for Open Borders, the Abolition of ICE, and an Internationalist Labor Movement.

The Makah are the only Native Americans with an explicit treaty right to hunt whales, but they have not been allowed to do so for 20 years. A recent proposal could change that.

* Against whale watching.

This Solar Energy Company Fired Its Construction Crew After They Unionized. Brazil Admits It Has a Deforestation Problem and Vows to Fix It. The climate crisis has sparked a Siberian mammoth tusk gold rush. Planes Are Ruining the Planet. New, Mighty Airships Won’t. Climate Change’s Great Lithium Problem. What We Can Learn From the Near-Death of the Banana.

* Big Calculator: How Texas Instruments Monopolized Math Class.

The Education Department for the first time has released earnings data for thousands of college programs at all degree levels. What do they show?

A Recession Is Looming. Even Harvard Is Uncertain About What That Means for Higher Ed. Then Enrollment Fell Off a Cliff: How Beloit College Is Trying to Regain Students. Number of Enrolled International Students Drops. A College Prepares to Close Its Doors as Students and Alumni Mourn — and Scheme.

* The end of the tour: Updated academic job numbers for English Lit (with data scraped from Academic Jobs Wiki). Since last posting on Oct 13th, 88 new TT jobs have been added. But that still leaves us at an all-time low, pretty far into the season. More here.

* The collapse of the profession across all fields.

* Paying for a ‘Toxic’ Postdoc.

‘Brilliant’ Philosophers and ‘Funny’ Psychology Instructors: What a Data-Visualization Tool Tells Us About How Students See Their Professors.

* Watch this story: Indiana University condemns professor’s racist and misogynistic tweets in strongest terms but won’t fire him over views alone.

He Violated Sexual-Misconduct Policy. He’s Back in the Classroom. What Should the University Do Now?

N.J. college professors are fed up. So they are staging a mass protest. Strikes Rock British Universities as Pension Crisis Deepens.

* every academic in the 90s either thought they were going to destroy western rationality by reading books the way some french guy told them to or was terrified that someone else was going to destroy western rationality by reading books the way some french guy told them to

* College Kids Are Not Your Problem.

* Podcast episode that might be interesting for friends in gaming studies or native studies to use in the classroom: “How Did This Get Played? #23: Custer’s Revenge (w/ Joey Clift).” Guest unexpectedly calls out bonkers booking logic that brings a native comedian on to talk about a native-raping and -killing simulator for the Thanksgiving episode.

* Pete Buttigieg Is a Lying MF. Moderate Democrats (Like Pete Buttigieg) Should Stop Pretending That Free College Is a Giveaway to Rich Kids. Stop Blaming Poor People for Their Poverty. Because you demanded it! There’s Only One Way the Patrick and Bloomberg Campaigns Make Sense. Democrats fear a long primary slog could drag into summer. The Corporate Media’s War Against Bernie Sanders Is Very Real. “In Moments of Crisis, Behind Every Moderate Liberal, There’s a Fascist.” When you work extra hard and turn Virginia blue. Why We Confronted Joe Biden on Deportations. Barack Obama, conservative.

* Meanwhile, in the UK.

* Bernie vs. Bernie.

I Don’t Know Why I Should Care What the Constitution Says.

Stop Assuming Republican Senators Will Do the Right Thing. Making Impeachment Matter.

Why Hasn’t Rudy Giuliani Been Disbarred Yet?

* The Atlantic dives in to Joe Biden’s stutter.

* The fall of Nate Silver.

* The Mr. Rogers no one saw. Mister Rogers And The Dark Abyss Of The Adult Soul.

Eurafrica and the myth of African independence.

Nearly All Mass Shooters Since 1966 Have Had 4 Things in Common.

White nationalists are openly operating on Facebook. The company won’t act.

* Leaked Documents Say Roughly 2,000 NY Prisoners Affected By Erroneous Drug Tests. Multiple Illinois prisoners say they have been denied eye surgery because of a “one good eye” policy that only entitles them to have one functioning eye. Half of Wisconsin’s Black Neighborhoods Are Jails. Appalachia vs. the Carceral State. Abolish active shooter drills.

Nation’s Biggest Charity Is Funding Influential White Nationalist Group.

* “Man living in bunker along Milwaukee River may have been there for years.”

Why are people getting worse at “The Price Is Right”? Science investigates.

* Every so often, something happens that is not completely horrible. Humanitarian volunteer Scott Warren reflects on the borderlands and two years of government persecution.

Being a Law Firm Partner Was Once a Job for Life. That Culture Is All but Dead.

* Legalizing same-sex marriage leads to big drop in gay suicide rate. Scientists Have Carried Out the Biggest Ever Study on Transgender Children — Here’s What They Found.

New York City’s best places to cry in public, mapped.

* The aliens are going to be super pissed that we trashed their airport.

* Things have gotten so bad even Alan Moore is voting.

* Autism, anti-vax movements, and the changeling myth.

* Isolation rooms and child abuse in Illinois.

Can the Terminator franchise be saved?

* Amazon’s Lord of the Rings Series Has Already Gotten a Second Season.

* I’m embarrassed how glad I am to hear about this: Star Trek 4 Is Back On, This Time From the Maker of Legion and Fargo.

* This one much less so.

* Abigail De Kosnik on Netflix time vs. fandom time.

The story of Squirrel Girl, told by those who brought her to life.

* The end of the middlebrow.

* Where is that sweet, sweet Baby Yoda plush?

* The Man in the High Castle: Swastikas used in Amazon series ‘proudly destroyed’ after filming.

How NBA executive Jeff David stole $13 million from the Sacramento Kings.

That Uplifting Tweet You Just Shared? A Russian Troll Sent It.

* hot take on the hot take economy

* Tesla tried to have a whistleblower SWATted, arrested, and placed on involuntary mental health hold. WeWork pivots to classification fraud. Consumer DNA Testing May Be the Biggest Health Scam of the Decade. Worker who raised alarm before deadly New Orleans hotel collapse to be deported.

* Former Valley CBP Immigration Officer Facing Possible Deportation.

* Physicists discover evidence of a new force of nature.

* A Blind Man Sees His Birthday Candles Again, Thanks to a Bionic Eye.

Earthquake Conspiracy Theorists Are Wreaking Havoc During Emergencies.

* The Overuse of ‘Emotional Labor’ Turns All Relationships Into Work.

* In a Chaotic World, Dungeons & Dragons Is Resurgent. The Top 10 Fantasy Books That Inspired Modern Dungeons & Dragons.

The 9-year journey to explore each of EVE Online’s 7,805 solar systems.

Thinking about Bowie’s mugshot, which might accidentally be one of the great portraits of the 20th century, and how photographers work their entire lives and will never capture anything as great as some dumbass cop in Rochester.

* I wish I didn’t know about your anus-brain, Flash. Good for you, buddy! What if humans are just adding comments to sloppy code? I’m immortal, it doesn’t even require patience. God that’s bleak.

* You’re not going to believe what I’m about to tell you.

* You’re not going to get away with it.

* statement of teaching philosophy

* How to save money before 40.

* and on the pedestal these words appear

* this isn’t really what twitter is for, but ten years ago today my son died and I basically never talk about it with anyone other than my wife. it’s taken me ten years to realize that I want to talk about it all the time.

* And in your heart, you know it’s canon.

Written by gerrycanavan

November 26, 2019 at 12:45 pm

Posted in Look at what I found on the Internet

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Couldn’t Write a Damn Word Today, So: Links!

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* Capitalism didn’t liberalize China; it made America more authoritarian. More on that first one here, more on that second one here and here. When you’ve got me rooting for South Park things have gone very wrong.

Sad Dad Space Movies: A Taxonomy.

* Tananarive Due: Inside My 90-Minute Visit With Octavia Butler.

* Think I forgot to promote this one: Call for papers: UC Riverside Symposium on speculative futures and education.

* On good science fiction.

* Get ready for the next recession.

* John Henry vs the steam engine, 2019 edition.

* The looting of higher ed.

* Dive deep into the latest Elizabeth Warren controversy.

Poll: Majority of Americans say they endorse opening of House impeachment inquiry of Trump. Romney v. Trump.

* A truly heroic commitment to corruption at every scale.

You don’t have to work for ICE. We will help you find a better job.

* Greta Thunberg Heads to Standing Rock to Support Indigenous Activists.

Set in 2053, Carbon Ruins inhabits a near-future world where we managed to get our collective shit together, reaching global net-zero carbon dioxide emissions goals in 2050.

* News of the weird! This nearly fatal shooting may have you barking with laughter.

* Cancel billionaires.

* The Obamanauts.

* For $29, This Man Will Help Manipulate Your Loved Ones With Targeted Facebook And Browser Links.

* The Concern Troll in Everyone.

I think this is all tied to the much more abstract, multivalent erosion of 19th and 20th Century conceptions of publics and citizenship in the direction of the constellation of ideas and practices that we often call “neoliberalism”. The advantages of this deferral of direct responsibility for advocacy are obvious for individuals and institutions. David Brooks or Bret Stephens can throw up their hands and say that they’re not responsible for gross errors of fact or tendentious constructions of argument, because they’re only serving as a messenger for what is said and claimed by others that they believe their readers should know about. Institutions can shield themselves against risk and liability if they are only conforming to or compliant with decisions and practices adopted elsewhere. The failure of solutions can be blamed on the subcontractor that supplied them or simply on the intractability of the problem itself without putting any values or beliefs in danger.

* The Comic That Explains Where Joker Went Wrong.

Pope Francis considers lifting celibacy requirement for priests.

* every time i think about this poem i need to lie down.”

* The Supreme Court has told Domino’s they have to stop suing over an accessibility issue that would have cost them $40,000 to fix.

* Don’t Be Fooled. Chief Justice John Roberts Is as Partisan as They Come.

* I can’t buy pizzas for an event without three signatures and I’m not allowed to tip over 16%, and I once exchanged an hour of emails with our accounting office over (literally) four cents, but ex-prof’s strip club habit sticks Drexel University with $190K bill.

* Against automated hiring.

Lyft and Uber Are Having a Terrible, Awful, No-Good Time.

* What can’t we remember our earliest years?

* And this gender reveal party has so much to teach us.

I Had To Do Some Laundry, So You Know What That Means: Wednesday Links!

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* CFP: Feral Feminisms is pleased to announce that we are now accepting submissions for our first general issue. Submission deadline is 15 January 2019.

* What our science fiction says about us.

* From the Earth to the Moon. And hell why not it’s Wednesday just a few more.

Following a Board of Trustees meeting this afternoon, Temple University President Richard Englert released a statement on behalf of the board, announcing that professor Marc Lamont Hill will not be punished or investigated for his Nov. 28 speech during an event organized with the United Nations. Now investigate the feckless administrators who made these baseless threats.

Executive Compensation at Private and Public Colleges 2018.

Following scientists in three fields, the paper’s authors found that it took about five years for a half of a science cohort to leave academic work in 2010 — compared to 35 years in the 1960s.

* Tired: China is building a social points system that will rank people from birth to death. Wired: Trump Is Trying to Use Credit Scores to Keep Immigrants Out of the U.S.

* Wow, here and I thought Scott Walker was a man of principle and integrity.

Social media will always be destructive for the Left. We should log the fuck off. I tweeted a tweet about the president and the modest virality of that tweet smells bad.

Grant Morrison Opens Up About Feuding With Alan Moore and Why He Still Doesn’t Like Watchmen.

* Upright Citizen’s Brigade on the brink.

* The Arctic Ocean has lost 95 percent of its oldest ice — a startling sign of what’s to come. Unparalleled warmth is changing the Arctic and affecting weather in US, Europe. In what is being called the first of its kind, Mayor Francis Suarez quietly signed a resolution last month to address climate gentrification in Miami. Those 3% of scientific papers that deny climate change? A review found them all flawed. EPA announces plan to poison all the water.

Children of Ted: Two decades after his last deadly act of ecoterrorism, the Unabomber has become an unlikely prophet to a new generation of acolytes.

ICE arrested 170 potential sponsors of unaccompanied migrant children.

* They say bipartisanship is dead, but U.S. House unanimously approves sweeping self-driving car measure.

* The law, in its infinite equality watch: Brooklyn, New York, District Attorney Eric Gonzalez has dropped charges against 23-year-old Jazmine Headley related to her arrest at a social services office on Friday, he announced Tuesday. Headley was charged with resisting arrest, acting in a manner injurious to a child, obstructing governmental administration, and trespassing after security guards called police over a dispute that apparently began because she was sitting on the floor while she waited with her 1-year-old son to renew a child-care benefit. Charge the cops who did this next.

* “Teenager Claims Body-Cams Show the Police Framed Him. What Do You See?” What terrible luck that the camera mysterious turned off during the relevant portion of the search! What are the chances!

What Everyone Having Diarrhea On The Set of The Magnificent Seven Tells Us About Toxic Masculinity.

* A ProPublica investigation has found that the IRS has been so gutted that audits of the top 1% are rapidly converging on audits of the bottom 36%. This is of course totally irrational, but completely in line with the contempt the ruling class has for the poor.

What It Means to Be a Marxist.

* The CRISPR babies and scientific ethics.

* The final stage of any sufficiently mammoth crime is abusing bankruptcy law to avoid responsibility.

* I remember having my mind blown by reading this observation in Daniel Dennett book twenty years ago: An ant colony has memories that its individual members don’t have.

* Throw these Chromebooks in the snow. Leave childhood alone, let kids have a little bit of joy.

* We lost that war. But the fight goes on.

* Yeah, that’ll solve it!

* And here is John F. Kennedy in 1961 writing to reassure a child that fallout from atmospheric nuclear weapon testing won’t kill Santa.

#SFRA2017-turday Links!

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* Keep watching #SFRA2017! It’s been a great conference. And it contains gems like this. Two other little theoretical highlights from my scattered live-tweeting:

* The audio from last week’s Octavia Butler conference at the Huntington is now up at Soundcloud. I’m track 7!

* American U scholar says provost cherry-picked negative student ratings of her teaching to deny her a promotion.

* Sci-Fi Legend Samuel R. Delany Doesn’t Play Favorites.

Will losing health insurance mean more US deaths? Experts say yes. Republicans Left Ron Johnson for Dead Last Year, Now He Could Kill Their Health Care Bill. Crowdfunding is the Sad, Dark Future of Healthcare.

* Trump’s Twitter and the judgment of history. Bill to create panel that could remove Trump from office quietly picks up Democratic support.

The Internet Is Actually Controlled By 14 People Who Hold 7 Secret Keys.

After the president’s tweet, I must withdraw my support for everything but his agenda.

* Getting closer and closer to the point where Republicans say it was good that Trump colluded with Putin. This is 100% guaranteed and will be the official position of Your Dad in six months.

* More on the voter suppression commission.

The Trump Administration Is Using Immigrant Children as Bait to Deport Their Parents. Afghanistan’s All-Girl Robotics Team Can’t Get Visas To The US.

* Why isn’t Kirsten Gillibrand running for president? Or is she?

* The moral code of Chinese sex workers.

* Training self-driving cars to algorithmically respond to road conditions in Southern California and confusing that for artificial intelligence is going to get people everywhere else killed.

* The Wonder Woman century.

* Twilight of the Internet.

* Political correctness is destroying this country’s cultural heritage.

* When someone says something mean to me. The kids just call it “Twitter.” And I want your secret.

Tuesday Morning Links!

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* The course descriptions for Marquette’s Fall 2017 English classes are up at the department website. Check them out! I’m teaching Tolkien and a grad seminar on utopia. 

* Also in Marquette news! Marquette to host ‘Buffy the Vampire Slayer’ conference in April.

Becoming a parent forces you to think about the nature of the problem — which is, in a lot of ways, the problem of nature […] the realities of aging and sickness and mortality become suddenly inescapable. […] [My wife] said something during that time I will never forget. “If I had known how much I was going to love him,” she said, “I’m not sure I would have had him.” Mark O’Connell on transhumanism and immortality.

* From the great Ali Sperling: Reading Lovecraft in the Anthropocene. And this review of Alan Moore’s Jerusalem from the great David Higgins!

* Adam Roberts reviews New York 2140. Another review, from a climate scientist. And an interview with Stan. My review comes out in LARB this weekend…

The Most Cringeworthy Monuments to Colleges’ Innovation Jargon.

Perverse outcomes: UC Berkeley deletes 20,000 audio and visual lectures in the name of compliance with the ADA.

Speculative Fiction and Survival in Iraq.

* Is it really so hard to understand that when your students go broke just trying to graduate they aren’t exactly moved to donate later?

harcourt_fenton_mudd_2267* The liberal arts at Harvey Mudd College, whose graduates out-earn Harvard and Stanford.

* You-might-be-from-Wisconsin-if at Ask MetaFilter.

President Roosevelt signed the order on February 19, 1942, almost exactly 75 years ago. By spring, American citizens would be arriving at the Fresno and Pinedale camps: our neighbors.

* Wisconsin is apparently harassing trans state employees.

* Chaos, again. This is fine. Even James Comey. Twilight of Reince Preibus. Ten Questions for President Trump. Ten More Questions for President Trump. Remember when it was scandalous that Obama, years before he became a politician, once sold his house?

It is through the Justice Department that the administration is likely to advance its nationalist plans — to strengthen the grip of law enforcement, raise barriers to voting and significantly reduce all forms of immigration, promoting what seems to be a longstanding desire to reassert the country’s European and Christian heritage. It’s not an accident that Sessions, who presumably could have chosen from a number of plum assignments, opted for the role of attorney general. The Department of Justice is the most valuable perch from which to transform the country in the way he and Bannon have wanted. With an exaggerated threat of disorder looming, the nation’s top law-enforcement agency could become a machine for trying to fundamentally change who gets to be an American and what rights they can enjoy.

The emerging effort — dozens more rules could be eliminated in the coming weeks — is one of the most significant shifts in regulatory policy in recent decades. It is the leading edge of what Stephen K. Bannon, Mr. Trump’s chief strategist, described late last month as “the deconstruction of the administrative state.”

* “Forever war, but too much.”

An Afghan family of five that had received approval to move to the United States based on the father’s work for the American government has been detained for more than two days after flying into Los Angeles International Airport, a legal advocacy group said in court documents filed on Saturday. Profiles of immigrant arrested in Austin. Thousands of ICE detainees claim they were forced into labor, a violation of anti-slavery laws. (Note this lawsuit was filed in 2014.This Stunningly Racist French Novel Is How Steve Bannon Explains The World. And if it were a book, it’d seem laughably contrived: A letter written in 1905 by Friedrich Trump, Donald Trump’s grandfather, to Luitpold, prince regent of Bavaria. Resisting ICE. Here we go again.

* 4chan and the Great Meme War.

* Russia and the Cyber Cold War.

* And while we’re on the subject: The Basic Formula For Every Shocking Russia/Trump Revelation. I think this is a very good reminder of the need to stay calm and detached from the chaos of the news cycle.

Instead, a new model is proposed: the president keeps everyone in a constant state of excitement and alarm. He moves fast and breaks things. He leads by causing commotion. As energy in the political system rises he makes no effort to project calm or establish an orderly White House. And if he keeps us safe it’s not by being himself a safe, steady, self-controlled figure, but by threatening opponents and remaining brash and unpredictable— maybe a touch crazy. This too is psychological work, but of a different kind.

* Democrats keep trusting demographics to save them. It hasn’t worked yet — but maybe this time…

NASA unveils plan to give Mars an ‘Earth-like’ atmosphere.

House Republicans Unveil Bill To Repeal Obamacare. The GOP health bill doesn’t know what problem it’s trying to solve.

Austerity measures don’t actually save money. But they do disempower workers. Which is why governments pursue them in the first place.

* No! It can’t be! Researchers have found strong evidence that racism helps the GOP win.

* Losing West Virginia.

Contrary to What You Learned in Sex Ed, You Can Get Pregnant While Pregnant.

* Mid-decade gerrymander in Georgia.

* Autism and Addiction.

* What We’ve Learned from Giving Dolphins LSD.

In a world first, a teenager with sickle cell disease achieved complete remission after an experimental gene therapy at Necker Children’s Hospital in Paris, researchers say.

* Possible lynching outside Seattle, in 2017.

* The end of suburbia.

* In the richest country in human history, children have “lunch debt.”

The only way in which a game is guaranteed to end is when the player abandons their device. Everything else is game design.

“These devices don’t have emotional intelligence,” said Allison Druin, a University of Maryland professor who studies how children use technology. “They have factual intelligence.” How millions of kids are being shaped by know-it-all voice assistants.

* Finding a jury of your peers in a racially segregated society.

* A colony in a nation.

Divination hasn’t disappeared; it’s taken over the world.

But these second-order obstacles aren’t enough to explain the current collapse of poll-driven political certainty. They’re just excuses, even if they’re not untrue. Something about the whole general scheme of polling—the idea that you can predict what millions of undecided voters will do by selecting a small group and then just simply asking them—is out of whack. We need to think seriously about what the strange game of election-watching actually is, in terms of our relation to the future, our power to choose our own outcomes, the large-scale structure of the universe, and the mysteries of fate. And these questions are urgent. Because predictions of the future don’t simply exist in the future, but change the way we act in the present. Because in our future something monstrous is rampaging: it paces hungrily toward us, and we need to know if we’ll be able to spot it in time.

When I said that opinion polls are sibyls and soothsayers, it wasn’t just a figure of speech. Opinion polling has all the trappings of a science—it has its numbers and graphs, its computational models, its armies of pallid drones poring over the figures. It makes hypotheses and puts them to the test. But polls are not taken for what they are: a report on what a small number of people, fond of changing their minds, briefly pretended to think. Instead, we watch the tracking graphs as if the future were playing itself out live in front of us. The real structure of the electoral-wonk complex is more mystical than materialist: it’s augury and divination, a method handed down by Prometheus to a starving and shivering humanity at the faint dawn of time. Behind all the desktop screens and plate-glass of his office, the buzz of data and the hum of metrics, Nate Silver retreats to a quiet, dark, and holy room. He takes the knife and slits in one stroke the throat of a pure-white bull; its blood arcs and drizzles in all directions. He examines its patterns. And he knows.

There’s a never-ending fount of stories you can write about when someone is breaking away from canon or not, and create many controversies all the way through preproduction and production and even until a movie opens, about whether or not they’re breaking canon. Is it a blasphemous movie or not? At some point, you gotta stop and say, Is there this expectation that it’s like we’re doing Godfather Part I and II, only it’s going to nine movies? And we’re just gonna cut them into this kind of Berlin Alexanderplatz that never ends? We’re gonna suddenly take a moment to really savor the fact that these movies exist in an identical tone? The reality to me is that you can’t have interesting movies if you tell a filmmaker, “Get in this bed and dream, but don’t touch the pillows or move the blankets.” You will not get cinema. You will just get a platform for selling the next movie on that bed, unchanged and unmade. James Mangold on Logan.

* The making of The Silmarillion.

* And we have but one choice: the Ring must be destroyed.

Written by gerrycanavan

March 7, 2017 at 9:00 am

Posted in Look at what I found on the Internet

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New Year’s Links!

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* A nice endorsement of Octavia E. Butler from Steve Shaviro. Some bonus Shaviro content: his favorite SF of 2016. I think Death’s End was the best SF I read this year too, though I really liked New York 2140 a lot too (technically that’s 2017, I suppose). I’d also single out Invisible Planets and The Best American Science Fiction and Fantasy 2016, both of which had some really good short stories. In comics, I think The Vision was the best new thing I’ve seen in years. There’s a lot I bought this year and didn’t have time to look at yet, though, so maybe check back with me in 2019 and I can tell you what was the best thing from 2016.

* Kindred: The Graphic Novel.

* Introducing the David Foster Wallace Society, including a CFP for the inaugural issue of The Journal of David Foster Wallace Studies.

Call for Papers: The Poverty of Academia.

* Oh, fuck this terrible year.

30 essential tips for succeeding in graduate school.

* The University in the Time of Trump.

Making the grade: a history of the A–F marking scheme.

* Who’s Afraid of the Student Debt Crisis?

Duke warns professors about emails from someone claiming to be a student, seeking information about their courses — many in fields criticized by some on the right. Some Michigan and Denver faculty members have received similar emails but from different source.

* The age of humanism is ending.

The New Year and the Bend of the Arc.

* The Front of the Classroom.

Marina Abramović and Kim Stanley Robinson perform “The Hard Problem.”

Osvaldo Oyola reads Ta-Nehisi Coates’s Black Panther.

* Leia Organa Solo: A Critical Obituary.

* Trump’s Arrival.

* Let them drink blood.

* BREAKING: There Is No Such Thing as “White Genocide.” Academic Freedom, Again. Buffalo skulls.

* I don’t think Children of Men was ever actually “overlooked” — and I’m shocked it was considered a flop at a time — but it certainly looks prescient now.

From Tape Drives to Memory Orbs, the Data Formats of Star Wars Suck. Remembering Caravan of Courage, the Ewok Adventure Star Wars Would Rather You’d Forget. Anti-fascism vs. nostalgia: Rogue One. How to See Star Wars For What It Really Is. And a new headcanon regarding the Empire and its chronic design problems.

Good News! Humans No Longer Caused Climate Change, According to the State of Wisconsin.

* How did A&E let this happen?

* On fighting like Republicans, or, the end of America.

* Scenes from the class struggle in Berkeley. And in Chillicothe, Ohio.

The seduction of technocratic government—that a best answer will overcome division, whether sown in the nature of man or ineluctable in capitalist society—slides into the seduction in the campaign that algorithms will render rote the task of human persuasion, that canvassers are just cogs for a plan built by machine. And so the error to treat data as holy writ, when it’s both easier and harder than that. Data are fragile; algorithms, especially when they aggregate preferences, fall apart. Always, always, power lurks. The technocrats have to believe in mass politics, believe for real that ordinary people, when they organize, can change their own destinies. Whether that happens depends on the party that gets built, and the forces behind it.

Four Cabinet nominations that could blow up in Donald Trump’s face. Fighting Mass Incarceration Under Trump: New Strategies, New Alliances. Why Donald Trump Might Not Be All That Good for Art. How Journalists Covered the Rise of Mussolini and Hitler. This all certainly seems on the up-and-up. And today in teaching the controversy: Nuclear diplomacy via Twitter is a bad idea.

* Democrats: Time to Win! Why the Democrats’ 2017 comeback dream is like nothing we’ve seen before.

The Russia Conundrum: How Can Democrats Avoid Getting Entangled in a Losing Issue?

House Republicans will ring in the new year with a plan to permanently cripple government.

Characters Are Not A Coloring Book Or, Why the Black Hermione is a Poor Apology for the Ingrained Racism of Harry Potter.

The Great Harvard Pee-In of 1973.

* Against jobs.

* Against Batman.

The UBI already exists for the 1%.

* The arc of history is long, but Google Search will not longer return Holocaust-denying websites at the top of page one.

* Same joke but about not being allowed to ban plastic bags in Michigan anymore.

The Champions of the 401(k) Lament the Revolution They Started.

* “It was a pleasure to cull.”

* Geoengineering could ruin astronomy.

* Haiti and the Age of Revolution.

* A Utopia for the Deaf in Martha’s Vineyard.

Why the ‘Ghost Ship’ Was Invisible in Oakland, Until 36 Died.

Nine charts that show how white women are drinking themselves to death.

* The American bison is the new U.S. national mammal, but its slaughter was once seen as a way to starve Native Americans into submission.

* It wasn’t just your imagination: more famous people did die in 2016.

* How long can Twitter go on like this?

* The Porn Business Isn’t Anything Like You Think it Is. The Attorney Fighting Revenge Porn.

* Special ed and the war on education.

My Little Free Library war: How our suburban front-yard lending box made me hate books and fear my neighbors.

* Becoming Ugly.

* Happy Public Domain Day 2017.

Intricate Star Trek Klingon Warship Using 25,000 LEGO Bricks.

* And the scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could, they didn’t stop to think if they should.

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Written by gerrycanavan

January 3, 2017 at 9:00 am

Posted in Look at what I found on the Internet

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Seven Pounds of Sunday Links in a Three-Pound Bag

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cr2zpcrw8aa7gey* If you missed it, my contribution to the thriving “Star Trek at 50″ thinkpiece industry: “We Have Never Been Star Trek.” And some followup commentary on First Contact and the Rebootverse from Adam Kotsko.

* Elsewhere: To Boldly Imagine: Star Trek‘s Half Century. 13 science fiction authors on how Star Trek influenced their lives. 50 Years of Trekkies. Women who love Star Trek are the reason that modern fandom exists. What If Star Trek Never Existed? In a World without Star Trek The Star Trek You Didn’t See. How Every Single Star Trek Novel Fits Together. What Deep Space Nine does that no other Star Trek series can. Fighter Planes vs. Navies. Fifty years of Star Trek – a socialist perspective. Star Trek in the Age of Trump. Star Trek Is Brilliantly Political. Well, It Used To Be. Sounds of Spock. A Counterpoint. Catching Up with Star Trek IV’s Real Hero. The Workday on the Edge of Forever. A few of the best images I gathered up this week: 1, 2. And of course they did: CBS and Paramount Royally Screwed Up Star Trek‘s 50th Anniversary.

* And some more Star Trek: Discovery teasing: Time to rewatch “Balance of Terror.” And Majel might even voice the computer.

Deadline Extended for the 2016 Tiptree Fellowship. The Foundation Essay Prize 2017.

* CFP: Speculative Finance/Speculative Fiction. Editors David M. Higgins and Hugh Charles O’Connell. Call for Chapters: Transmedia Star Wars. Editors Sean A. Guynes and Dan Hassler-Forest.

* Not a CFP, but I’m glad to see this is coming soon: None of This is Normal: The Fiction of Jeff VanderMeer.

* Polygraph #25, on sound and the modes of production, is now available.

* Tolkien once said that fantasy can’t work on stage. Katy Armstrong argues that The Cursed Child only works on stage. Harry Potter and the Conscience of a Liberal.

* On Utopia and Reaction.

* Poetry and Class Struggle.

* This LARB essay on scholars fighting about King Lear is as spellbinding as everyone said.

Here is a list of things that I am including in this book. Please send me my seven-figure advance. An Easy Guide to Writing the Great American Novel.

Concerns Over Future of UMass Labor Center.

Lockout at LIU. The Nuclear Option. Unprecedented. This is the first time that higher-ed faculty have ever been locked out. Lockout Lessons. Students Walkout. As Lockout Continues at Long Island U., Students Report Meager Classroom Instruction. This has been, to say the least, an amazing story.

Decline of Tenure for Higher Education Faculty: An Introduction.

Salaita’s Departure and the Gutting of American Indian Studies at the University of Illinois.

Inmates Are Planning The Largest Prison Strike in US History. ‘Incarcerated Workers’ stage nationwide prison labor strike 45 years after 1971 Attica riot. Your Refresher on the 13th Amendment.

The long, steady decline of literary reading. History Enrollments Drop. Werner Herzog Narrates My Life as a Graduate Student. My dirty little secret: I’ve been writing erotic novels to fund my PhD.

Quebec’s massive student strikes emerged from an organizing model that constantly trains new generations of activists.

Retirement Plan Roulette.

* The First Trans*Studies Conference.

* Donna Haraway: “Tentacular Thinking: Anthropocene, Capitalocene, Chthulucene.”

The unfinished Chthulucene must collect up the trash of the Anthropocene, the exterminism of the Capitalocene, and chipping and shredding and layering like a mad gardener, make a much hotter compost pile for still possible pasts, presents, and futures.

A bit more here.

* Elsewhere in the Anthropocene: Montana declares state of emergency over pipeline spill, oily drinking water. The Gradual Atlantis (and see Dr. K.S. Robinson for more). Fast Fashion and Environmental Crisis. The Planet Is Going Through A ‘Catastrophic’ Wilderness Loss, Study Says. The Oceans Are Heating Up. A Monument to Outlast Humanity. New genus of bacteria found living inside hydraulic fracturing wells. And from the archives: Louisiana Doesn’t Exist.

The Joyful, Illiterate Kindergartners of Finland. What Should a Four-Year-Old Know? How to Raise a Genius.

* Michael R. Page on the greatness of The Space Merchants. Bonus content from University of Illinois Press: Five Quotes from Frederik Pohl.

The problem with this reasoning, at least as it relates to graduate students, is that we have had fifty years to find out if unions destroy graduate education. They don’t.

How Unions Change Universities. Scabbing on Our Future Selves.

Of Moral Panics, Education, Culture Wars, and Unanswerable Holes.

The Death of ITT Tech, Part One: What Happened?

* Audrey Watters on the (credit) score.

* Clemson’s John C. Calhoun Problem. And Jack Daniels’s.

* Welcome to Our University! We’re Delighted to Have You, But If You Think We’re Going to Cancel the Ku Klux Klan Rally, You’ve Got Another Think Coming. Cashing in on the Culture Wars: U Chicago.

* The things English speakers know, but don’t know they know.

* Raymond Chandler and Totality.

* Writing Like a State.

Slapstick, Fordism and the Communist Avant-Garde.

Capitalist Saboteurs.

Why ‘The Stranger’ Almost Didn’t Get Published.

It’s Getting Harder and Harder to Deny That Football Is Doomed.

After Richmond Student Writes Viral Essay About Her Rape Case, the University Calls Her a Liar.

* Milwaukee vs. Pikachu. The World’s Most Dangerous Game: Pokémon’s Strange History with Moral Panics.

Weapons of Math Destruction: invisible, ubiquitous algorithms are ruining millions of lives.

British artist Rebecca Moss went aboard the Hanjin Geneva container ship for a “23 Days at Sea Residency.” But the company that owns the ship went bankrupt on August 31, and ports all over the world have barred Hanjin’s ships because the shipping line is unable to pay the port and service fees. Artist-in-residence stuck on bankrupt container ship that no port will accept.

* Christopher Newfield talks his new book on the collapse of the public university, The Great Mistake.

Bill de Blasio’s Pre-K Crusade.

* The Plight of the Overworked Nonprofit Employee.

* FiveThirtyEight: What Went Wrong?

The Lasting Impact of Mispronouncing Students’ Names.

* The law, in its majestic equality: Black Defendants Punished Harsher After A Judge’s Favorite Football Team Loses.

* Fred Moten on academic freedom, Palestine, BDS, and BLM.

* Being Nadja Spiegelman.

* The Night Of and the Problem of Chandra.

The Book of Springsteen. Relatedly: Bruce Springsteen’s Reading List.

* Defining Unarmed.

New research suggests that humans have a sixth basic taste in addition to sweetness, sourness, saltiness, bitterness, and umami. It’s starchiness.

* Against Theory.

Differently from philosophy, which functions under long, frustrating timings, and very rarely reaches any certainty, theory is quick, voracious, sharp, and superficial: its model is the “reader,” a book made to help people make quotations from books that are not read.

* The largest strike in world history?

* The Walrus has an absolutely wrenching piece on stillbirth.

How to Tell a Mother Her Child Is Dead.

“Science thought there was one species and now genetics show there are four species,” Dr. Janke said. “All zoos across the world that have giraffes will have to change their labels.”

The Mysterious Ending of John Carpenter’s The Thing May Finally Have an Answer.

* Teach the controversy: No Forests on Flat Earth.

* The clash of eschatologies.

Wisconsin appeals Brendan Dassey’s overturned conviction.

* Abolish the iPhone. How Apple Killed the Cyberpunk Dream. It’s not much better over there.

* Atwood and comics.

The NEH’s chairman, Bro Adams, tries to make a case for the humanities. Is anyone listening?

* Britain isn’t doing a super great job with Brexit.

* No other image has better captured the struggle that is simply living every day: Drunk Soviet worker tries to ride on hippo (Novokuznetsk, in Kemerovo, 1982). Yes, there’s still more links below.

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* The DEA vs. Kratom. Why Banning the Controversial Painkiller Kratom Could Be Bad News for America’s Heroin Addicts.

*Never-Ending Election Watch: How Donald Trump Retooled His Charity to Spend Other People’s Money. Trump pays IRS a penalty for his foundation violating rules with gift to aid Florida attorney general. A Tale of Two Scandals. That Clinton Foundation Scandal the Press Wants Exists, But they Won’t Report it Because it’s Actually About the Trump Foundation. Inside Bill Clinton’s nearly $18 million job as ‘honorary chancellor’ of a for-profit college. No More Lesser-Evilism. And Vox, you know, explaining the news.

* Dominance politics, deplorables edition.

* And put this notion in your basket of deplorables: Darkwing Duck and DuckTales Are in Separate Universes and This Is Not Okay.

How Fox News women took down the most powerful, and predatory, man in media.

* Yes, Here Comes Trump TV.

* Corporal Punishment in American Schools.

* Black Teachers Matter.

* I say jail’s too good for ’em: US library to enforce jail sentences for overdue books.

Bugs Bunny, the Novel, and Transnationalism.

* Understanding Hellboy.

* The Perilous Lure of the Underground Railroad. The Atlantic Slave Trade in Two Minutes.

* What’s the Matter with Liberals?

* Alan Moore Confirms Retirement from Comic Books. An interview in the New York Times where, lucky for me, he talks a lot about David Foster Wallace.

The Need For Believable Non-White Characters — Sidekicks, Included.

What Your Literature Professor Knows That Your Doctor Might Not.

Geologic Evidence May Support Chinese Flood Legend.

Fully Autonomous Cars Are Unlikely, Says America’s Top Transportation Safety Official.

* Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal roundup: The Clockmaker. Science Journalism. I Am No Longer a Child. Teach a Man to Fish. How Stress Works. On Parenting. You haven’t hit bottom yet. Keep scrolling!

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* Today in unnecessary sequels: Mel Gibson confirms Passion Of The Christ sequel. And elsewhere on the unnecessary sequel beat: We Finally Know What the Avatar Sequels Will Be About.

* At least they won’t let Zack Snyder ruin Booster Gold.

* Poe’s Law, but for the left? Inside the Misunderstood World of Adult Breastfeeding.

* The Revolution as America’s First Civil War.

* Mike Konczal on Eviction.

* What Happens When We Decide Everyone Else Is a Narcissist.

45,000 Pounds of Would-Be Pennies Coat Highway After Delaware Crash.

* ‘Illegal’ Immigration as Speech.

* Second Thoughts of an Animal Researcher.

* Conspiracy Corner: Obama and the Jesuits.

On Sept. 16 the opera “Happy Birthday, Wanda June,” based on Vonnegut’s play, will have its world premiere in Indianapolis. A dayslong celebration of, and reflection on, the best-selling author’s works called Vonnegut World will precede it.

* The Unseen Drawings of Kurt Vonnegut.

* The Science of Loneliness. Loneliness can be depressing, but it may have helped humans survive.

* Once more, with feeling: On the greatness of John Brunner.

* Let us now praise Let Us Now Praise Famous Men.

* Look Upon My Works, Ye Mighty, and Despair: Man Dies, Leaving Behind a Sea Of Big-Boobed Mannequins. Yes, it’s a Milwaukee story.

Play The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy Video Game Free Online, Designed by Douglas Adams in 1984.

* Taking a Stand at Standing Rock. Life in the Native American oil protest camps.

* Earth First: The Musical.

The Subtle Design Features That Make Cities Feel More Hostile.

* Hitchens wept.

* Rebel propaganda. All the Ewoks are dead.

* Finally.

* Salvador Dali Illustrates Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.

* Where the Monsters Are. The Wonderful World of Westeros.

* And I’ll be bookmarking this for later, just in case: A lively new book investigates the siren call—and annoying logistics—of death fraud.

salvadordali_alice5

Written by gerrycanavan

September 11, 2016 at 9:00 am

Posted in Look at what I found on the Internet

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Mondayish Reading

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In the past five years, public universities pumped more than $10.3 billion in mandatory student fees and other subsidies into their sports programs, according to an examination by The Chronicle of Higher Education and The Huffington Post. The review included an inflation-adjusted analysis of financial reports provided to the NCAA by 201 public universities competing in Division I, information that was obtained through public-records requests. The average athletic subsidy that these colleges and their students have paid to their athletic departments increased 16 percent during that time. Student fees, which accounted for nearly half of all subsidies, increased by 10 percent.

Gender Bias in Academe: An Annotated Bibliography of Important Recent Studies.

TV archive discovers couple who beat Kirk and Uhura to first interracial kiss.

* Marquette is hiring a sustainability coordinator.

* “Why I’m Teaching a Netflix Class.”

* What Do You Have to Make in a Year to be in the Top 1% of Your State?

* Videogames without Players.

The Death and Life of Simulated Cities.

You could call it Rahm’s revenge—the whole point of passing a more ambitious, more politically risky version of Obamacare was to get enough healthy people to buy coverage, and that’s exactly what hasn’t been happening.

Anti-proliferation advocates have accused U.S. officials of disguising the fact that they have built a new weapon, breaking President Obama’s promise not to construct new nuclear bombs.

Syracuse thought that by building a giant highway in the middle of town it could become an economic powerhouse. Instead, it got a bad bout of white flight and the worst slum problem in America. How to Decimate a City.

* On science fiction and post-scarcity economics.

20130126* I suppose I’ve always been ahead of the curve.

Junot Díaz talk discusses social activism in academia.

* To be sure, anger over Western policies is among the drivers of recruitment for groups like IS, but IS is not a purely reactive organisation: it is a millenarian movement with a distinctly apocalyptic agenda. As Elias Sanbar, a Palestinian diplomat in Paris, points out, ‘One of the most striking things about Islamic State is that it has no demands. All the movements we’ve known, from the Vietcong to the FLN to the Palestinians, had demands: if the occupation ends, if we get independence, the war ends. But Daesh’s project is to eliminate the frontiers of Sykes-Picot. It’s like the Biblical revisionism of the settlers, who invent a history that never existed.’

Penn State Cancels Recreational Class Trips To NYC & DC Due To “Safety Concerns.”

* Star Wars, before the EU. Alan Moore’s Star Wars. Hang the Jedi.

* A brief history of judicial dissent.

* On Woodrow Wilson. Wilson’s racism wasn’t the matter of a few unfortunate remarks here or there. It was a core part of his political identity, as indicated both by his anti-black policies as president and by his writings before taking office. It is completely accurate to describe him as a racist and white supremacist and condemn him accordingly.

The people in these communities who are voting Republican in larger proportions are those who are a notch or two up the economic ladder — the sheriff’s deputy, the teacher, the highway worker, the motel clerk, the gas station owner and the coal miner. And their growing allegiance to the Republicans is, in part, a reaction against what they perceive, among those below them on the economic ladder, as a growing dependency on the safety net, the most visible manifestation of downward mobility in their declining towns.

Meet the outsider who accidentally solved chronic homelessness.

What was it like to be a Nintendo game play counselor?

* Antonin Scalia, fraud, part 87.

* The rich are better.

* The struggle is real.

* They live, weesa sleep.

* The rise of “white student unions.” They’re probably fake.

Use of High-Tech Brooms Divides Low-Tech Sport of Curling.

* When administrations co-opt student movements, Duke edition. Also at Duke: debate over continuation fees.

* CNN, still the worst, forever and ever amen.

* Trump has aggressively weaponized the ability of right-wing politicians to lie with impunity. Though you always wonder if there’s still some limit after all.

* The further I get into my thirties, the more depressed I become.

* Women in Hollywood.

* Music stops, everybody switch positions on free speech.

Colbert Drops to 3rd Place Behind Kimmel as New Poll Shows CBS Host Alienating Audiences. I’ve never understood CBS’s plan here.

* English is not normal.

* The McDonaldization of Medicine.

* The Unholy Alchemy behind Cheetos.

* Come along, Susan.

* Super-excited to trust my kids to the wisdom of the public school system.

In the first majority-Muslim U.S. city, residents tense about its future.

‘Hunger Games’ Box Office: Why $101M Weekend For ‘Mockingjay 2’ May Be Cause For Despair.

A “lost” James Bond movie written by Peter Morgan, the Oscar-nominated screenwriter of Frost/Nixon and The Queen, would have seen Daniel Craig’s 007 forced to kill Judi Dench’s spymaster M in a shock finale, according to a new book.

* Required classes, y’all.

* The tech economy, still a bad joke.

All U.S. Lab Chimps Are Finally Going To Paradise: A Retirement Home in the South Somewhere.

* Enjoy it while it lasts: Coffee’s good for you again.

* Elsewhere in science facts that are definitely going to hold up forever and ever: Scientists Say Psychopathic People Really Like Bitter Food.

* SyFy wants a Black Mirror too. Syfy is Releasing a Film, De-Rebranding, and Becoming Super Interesting.

* What crime is the founding of a bank, compared to the founding of a police department?

* But just in case you had any ideas that this wasn’t going to be a super-depressing list: Antibiotic resistance: World on cusp of ‘post-antibiotic era.’

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Written by gerrycanavan

November 23, 2015 at 9:00 am

Posted in Look at what I found on the Internet

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First Tuesday after the First Monday in November Links!

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* ICYMI: An edited and expanded meritocracy, lottery, game blog post got republished at Inside Higher Ed yesterday. Here’s a reply suggesting a better metaphor than games might be the casting process.

* Cool stuff happening at Marquette: Conflicting Audience Reception of Tauriel in Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit. A student-curated exhibit at the Taggerty. And of course there’s my pop culture group geeking out over The Hunger Games.

A college can’t fire an adjunct professor for criticizing it, so long as the issues raised are matters of public concern and the adjunct has reasonable expectation of continued employment, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit ruled Thursday in a decision regarding Moraine Valley Community College in Illinois.

Walter Benjamin’s Radio Plays. You Know, for Kids.

A Manifesto for the Freelance Academic.

* Colorado Community College Faculty Bill of Rights.

* Is academic science still sexist? No! Yes!

Colleges have no business being vehicles for mass entertainment any more than they have business selling widgets or maintaining a fishing fleet. It is no proper part of a university’s mission to provide quality television programming and year-round gambling opportunities for the rest of the country. That this has become the norm in America’s system of higher education is a monstrous accident of history and of academic neglect, but there it is, and it is not going anywhere, and the only way to do it is simply to make an honest business out of it.

* Gasp! …the average student in a MOOC is not a Turkish villager with no other access to higher education but a young white American man with a bachelor’s degree and a full-time job.

* Cura personalis: The maturation of the student—not information transfer—is the real purpose of colleges and universities. Of course, information transfer occurs during this process. One cannot become a master of one’s own learning without learning something. But information transfer is a corollary of the maturation process, not its primary purpose. This is why assessment procedures that depend too much on quantitative measures of information transfer miss the mark. It is entirely possible for an institution to focus successfully on scoring high in rankings for information transfer while simultaneously failing to promote the maturation process that leads to independent learning.

* The end of the Red Cross.

* The latest from Aaron Bady’s ongoing interview series at Post45: “Not in a million years did I expect some people to be upset about the portrayal of the conquistadors.”

* My Grandma the Poisoner.

* Happy election day! The empty election. The Democrats are doomed. Ginsburg Was Right: Texas’ Extreme Voter ID Law Is Stopping People From Voting. New Voting Restrictions Could Swing the 2014 Election. Black people, white government. Facebook Wants You to Vote on Tuesday. Here’s How It Messed With Your Feed in 2012.

Lawyers, judges, and even journalists tend to have trouble finding people like Eric Kennie—the people who are the most completely disenfranchised by a law like SB14—precisely because such people are, in many areas of life, completely disenfranchised.  If they had the kind of economic and social wherewithal to make their voices heard in political or legal spheres—if they knew lawyers or journalists or legislators or people who knew such people—then they most likely would also have the kind of economic and social wherewithal to obtain the documents SB14 demands.  Their very lack of money, lack of a car, lack of knowledge of how the system works, and lack of options also tend to make them invisible to the more elite actors who, in distant courtrooms and legislative hearing rooms and newsrooms, fight out the disputes that affect whether they can vote.  From the point of view of those more elite actors, looking for Eric Kennie is indeed, as Pilkington puts it, like looking for a vacuum.  It like an anti-social-networking puzzle in our networked age: please find me the people who are the most distant from, the least connected to, me or anyone I know.

* And as if the whole stupid thing weren’t irrational enough: Sense of disgust is ’95 percent accurate’ predictor of whether you’re liberal or conservative.

* Tom Steyer spent $57 million to get voters to care about climate change. It didn’t work. Oh, if only he’d spent $58 million!

* Cancel the midterms! There’s still time!

* Viewpoint Magazine, Issue 4: “The State.”

* 2016 and imperial feminism.

*The dependence of the poor on payday loans is neither natural nor inevitable. It is the result of neoliberal policies. The New Loan Sharks. Payday Loans, You Know, for Kids.

* They’re Still Redlining.

* BREAKING: The stock market is an irrational casino and we have no idea how it works.

* Huge congrats to Obama for triumphing here over a really tough field.

* Bullshit Jobs, the Caring Classes, and the Future of Labor: An Interview with David Graeber.

* Historical Futurology. Check the footnotes for some nice citation of Green Planets!

* The sharing economy has a race problem. The Sharing Economy: 21st Century Technology, 19th Century Worker Protections. The Sharing Economy’s ‘First Strike’: Uber Drivers Turn Off the App.

* Nudes and female corporal ownership.

Hollaback and Why Everyone Needs Better Research Methods.

* How Racism Stole Black Childhood.

* Fracking Wells Abandoned in Boom/Bust Cycle. Who Will Pay to Cap Them?

* Americans Are Working So Hard It’s Actually Killing People.

* The justice system is a monster: Why Innocent People Plead Guilty.

* Finally, someone has put transubstantiation to a rigorous scientific test.

* On Saturday, Brittany Maynard used Oregon’s Death With Dignity law to end her life.

Erwin Chemerinsky read a 500-page biography of Antonin Scalia so you don’t have to. Spoiler alert: he’s the worst.

* In praise of A Canticle for Leibowitz. Really bad third act problems, though.

People can feel lots of different things about Lena Dunham and her body of work. What I’m not comfortable with, and certainly not under the mantle of supporting victims and building a culture of consent, is for people to create a narrative of victimization and abuse for Grace Dunham that she has never claimed for herself.

Losing My Career to Illness: Academia and Parkinson’s Disease.

* Bruce Springsteen by the book.

Cheat-Sheet for a Non (or Less) Colonialist Speculative Design.

* FBI Files on African American Authors and Literary Institutions Obtained through the U.S. Freedom of Information Act.

* Mr. Rogers Talks To The Wicked Witch About Being Misunderstood.

* “The court finds that Secular Humanism is a religion for Establishment Clause purposes,” the ruling read.

* In 2014, countries are still paying off debt from World War One.

* UK cultural institutions leave their WWI cases empty to protest insane copyright.

* Dachau’s notorious ‘Arbeit Macht Frei’ gate stolen.

* Secret Fantasies of Adults.

* The legendary comics author Alan Moore has written a million-word novel, tribute to every eternal speck in his universe.

A Melancholy List of Edgar Allan Poe’s Debts, From His Bankruptcy Petition of 1842.

* How to stop global warming, in seven steps. Oh, if only it’d been six steps!

* Stephen King: The Rolling Stone Interview.

* And kiss your free time goodbye: you can now play 900 pre-1996 arcade games online for free.

Written by gerrycanavan

November 4, 2014 at 7:00 am

Posted in Look at what I found on the Internet

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Thursday Links!

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* In case you missed it from the weekend: a CFP for a Science Fiction Film and Television special issue on “Star Trek at 50.”

* Call for submissions: Accessing the Future.

* Today’s twenty-first-century political weirdness is the Scotland referendum on independence. The Guardian. MetaFilter. The economic case. Schroedinger’s Kingdom. John Oliver. Why Scotland thinks it can survive as an independent country. I’m Guardian editor Matt Wells. Got questions on Scottish independence? Ask away!

* Alison Bechdel, certified genius. Some professors won too.

* Postdoc of the year: “The Center for Presidential History at Southern Methodist University invites applications for its 2015-2016 Postdoctoral Fellowship program. The successful candidates will couple their own research and publishing agenda with their contributions to the Center’s Collective Memory Project, a wide ranging oral history of the George W. Bush Presidency.” Friend, do I have a story for you.

* “Debates about the future of the humanities frequently revolve around the suspicion that the humanities might not have one.”

* Chris Ware is serializing a novella in the Guardian: “The Last Saturday.”

* Unpopular opinions watch: Carceral progressivism.

More Weird Facts You Probably Didn’t Know About The Original Star Trek.

Roddenberry believed there was no chest hair in the future.

The dream never dies.

* A day in the life of a data mined kid.

This Is What Happens To Transgender Kids Who Delay Puberty.

The Time I Spent On A Commercial Whaling Ship Totally Changed My Perspective On The World.

* World War II and the creation of the paperback industry.

* Cruel optimism watch: Are More MLA Faculty Jobs on the Way?

* Reporting rape at UNC.

* The madness of crowds: Wealthy L.A. Schools’ Vaccination Rates Are as Low as South Sudan’s.

* Despite all evidence to the contrary, blaming black culture for racial inequality remains politically dominant. And not only on the Right.

* Hamburg wants to be the best city in the world in 20 years.

* Burlington nipping on its heels.

* Calvinball in Wisconsin: the rules on voting just changed again.

* Lone Wolf returns!

* Study: 30 percent of former NFL players will get dementia or Alzheimer’s.

* Don’t look now, but the US prison population is growing again.

* The University of California is just literally a hedge fund now.

What Are the Real Odds That Your Birth Control Will Fail? Pretty frightening.

* A King Kong prequel, because we haven’t even come close to hitting bottom yet.

* Do Animals Cry?

* BREAKING: Naomi Klein Is Right, Unchecked Capitalism Will Destroy Civilization.

In decades of public debate about global warming, one assumption has been accepted by virtually all factions: that tackling it would necessarily be costly. But a new report casts doubt on that idea, declaring that the necessary fixes could wind up being effectively free. The price is too high!

* BREAKING: Immigrants aren’t stealing your jobs.

* A feminist history of Wonder Woman.

Every panel of Watchmen, sorted by average lightness, ascending.

* Understanding the Tortoise and the Hare.

* Because you demanded it: “Play It Again, Dick,” the weird quasi-Veronica-Mars nega-sequel, is finally here.

* Necrocapitalism in the Anthropocene: Govt may do away with tribal consent for cutting forests.

* Why we can’t have nice things: Thievery marring Little Free Libraries.

Anti-monuments in Milwaukee and beyond.

* May 2015 can’t come fast enough.

* And no one could have predicted: Apple releases U2 album removal tool.

AURORA_KIM_STANLEY_ROBINSON

Wednesday Links!

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* What we’re talking about in my cultural preservation class today: Jyotsna Kapur’s “Capital limits on creativity: neoliberalism and its uses of art.” I’d actually suggest the adjunct herself functions as “the model worker of the new economy” alongside the freelancer.

The results of the Creative Culture Industry policy have already started to come in. Kate Oakley, among others, has shown that in the case of Britain these policies have exacerbated rather than eliminated inequality. They have led to gentrification and pockets of wealth in the midst of disintegrating social infrastructure. At the same time, work in the creative industries has become increasingly precarious — that is, temporary, project-based, and competitive, putting artists and media people in a constant in search of work (2006). As Richard Shearmur has indicated, calling upon local governments to modify their policies, planning, and budgets in order to respond to the preferences of the creative class boils down to reinforcing and subsidizing elites to a kind of ‘talent welfare’ that is reminiscent of ‘corporate welfare’ (2006-7, 37). In the process, art’s entire social role is undergoing a profound transformation. From being considered an imaginative and critical outsider or a participant in social transformation, the artist is now presented as the model worker of the new economy.

New, privatized African city heralds climate apartheid.

* The bad conscience of empire: Historic papers about the slave trade are among the enormous cache of public documents that the Foreign Office has unlawfully hoarded in a secret archive, the Guardian has learned.

* Westerners are so convinced China is a dystopian hellscape they’ll share anything that confirms it.

* Pollution from Chinese factories is harming air quality on U.S. West Coast!

* The chemical spill that contaminated water for hundreds of thousands in West Virginia was only the latest and most high-profile case of coal sullying the nation’s waters.

* Only You Can Discover Oil Pipeline Spills, Since 80 Percent Of The Time The Companies Miss Them.

* Train Derailment In Philadelphia Leaves Crude Oil Car Dangling Over Schuylkill River.

* UWM sued over dissolution of student government.

New York’s Mayor Is Snow Plowing the City Along Class Lines Again.

* Campus shootings have become so common they barely make the news anymore.

* Good Guy with a Gun shoots self with gun, for second time.

Connersville, Indiana police chief David Counceller’s most recent self-inflicted wound occurred when his sweatshirt jammed against his 40-caliber Glock’s trigger as he attempted to holster the weapon. He was examining a new Glock at a gun shop at the time.

* ‘Pregnant Sims Can No Longer Brawl’ And Other Amazing Sims Patch Notes.

* Good Jersey / Bad Jersey: New Jersey Will Protect Pregnant Workers From Discrimination And Unsafe Conditions. Christie declines to sign bill requiring public notice of raw sewage overflows.

* Former Virginia Governor Indicted on Corruption Charges.

* The Racially Fraught History of the American Beard.

* “To my mind, this embracing of what were unambiguously children’s characters at their mid-20th century inception seems to indicate a retreat from the admittedly overwhelming complexities of modern existence,” he wrote to Ó Méalóid. “It looks to me very much like a significant section of the public, having given up on attempting to understand the reality they are actually living in, have instead reasoned that they might at least be able to comprehend the sprawling, meaningless, but at-least-still-finite ‘universes’ presented by DC or Marvel Comics. I would also observe that it is, potentially, culturally catastrophic to have the ephemera of a previous century squatting possessively on the cultural stage and refusing to allow this surely unprecedented era to develop a culture of its own, relevant and sufficient to its times.”

* Once we had the Sideways House, now we have the Upside-Down House.

* Legalizing murder still working out great.

* What Grantland Got Wrong. When mainstream media is the lunatic fringe.

* How to Use Public-Private Partnerships to Screw the Poor.

* The headline reads, “Pubic Hair Grooming Injuries Have Quintupled.”

* If A then B: How the World Discovered Logic. The golden age of female philosophy.

* Back to the Future fan wants to make sequel accurate by releasing tons of Jaws movies.

* Don’t ever spoil Homeland for Jennifer Lawrence.

* If you eat the yellow pill, you will know all things. If you eat the green pill, you will know nothing but happiness.

* How to win a Best Actress Oscar.

* And never let them say our civilization never accomplished anything.

Wednesday Links!

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* The law, in its majestic equality… Rejecting Man’s Bid For Refugee Status, Court Rules Climate Change Is Not ‘Persecution.’

New Kenyan Sci-Fi Series Imagines Immigration In Reverse, As Africa Becomes World’s Oasis.

“I haven’t read any superhero comics since I finished with Watchmen,” [Moore] said in a discussion on his latest work, Fashion Beast. “I hate superheroes. I think they’re abominations. They don’t mean what they used to mean. They were originally in the hands of writers who would actively expand the imagination of their nine-to-13-year-old audience. That was completely what they were meant to do and they were doing it excellently. These days, superhero comics think the audience is certainly not nine to 13, it’s nothing to do with them. It’s an audience largely of 30-, 40-, 50-, 60-year old men, usually men. Someone came up with the term graphic novel. These readers latched on to it; they were simply interested in a way that could validate their continued love of Green Lantern or Spider-Man without appearing in some way emotionally subnormal. This is a significant rump of the superhero-addicted, mainstream-addicted audience. I don’t think the superhero stands for anything good. I think it’s a rather alarming sign if we’ve got audiences of adults going to see the Avengers movie and delighting in concepts and characters meant to entertain the 12-year-old boys of the 1950s.”

* Rortyblog: How to Waste a Crisis.

In what sense is this neoliberal? Some of this could be viewed as an attempt to create market citizens, and an ideological story can be told about how the right’s current program fully shifts risks to the individual and makes them an even more conscious participant in managing their own risks. But on its face, it looks a lot like class war, full stop. Mirowski never explains why the ideological project of market subjectivity serves any other purpose but class war, or why, even when neoliberal tenets about embracing precarity as liberation have taken hold broadly, the movement continues to fuel itself with reactionary ressentiment. If neoliberalism is not class war, why hasn’t it been content with winning?

* National Humanities Report Reinforces Stereotypes about the Humanities.

The report’s emphasis on skills over content occurs even when it specifically addresses humanities research, or the production of knowledge, itself. For example, the most sustained definition “The Heart of the Matter” gives of humanities research is that research in the humanities “enables us to see the world from different points of view so that we may better understand ourselves” (38). This definition frames the purpose of humanities research as helping us to broaden our perspective and to understand ourselves better, not as making new discoveries and producing new knowledge about our past and our present. Such a definition, again, reduces the production of complex humanistic knowledge to the transmission of generally applicable skill-sets. This reaffirms one of the major criticisms leveled at the humanities today: that the subjects humanists study are impractical, useless, and unimportant. By defending the value of the humanities on the grounds that the most important thing humanities disciplines do is teach important skills, we concede the point that the specific knowledge humanistic disciplines produce is unimportant.

* Universities need to teach things, or else they are strip malls.

The Pope Just Published One Of The Most Powerful Critiques Of Modern Capitalism That You Will Ever Read. Evangelii Gaudium. “I prefer a church which is bruised, hurting and dirty because it has been out on the streets, rather than a church which is unhealthy from being confined and from clinging to its own security.”

* More Vatican-City-style communism! 14 Genius Ideas The U.S. Should Seriously Consider Adopting.

Over 176 Pounds? The morning after pill probably won’t work for you. The comments (which of course are terrible) reveal other instances of this kind of body normativity in medicine that I simply had no idea about.

* No Animals Were Harmed: Inside the AHA.

These employees allege, and available AHA internal evidence supports their claims, that the organization distorts its film ratings, downplays or fails to publicly acknowledge harmful incidents and sometimes doesn’t seriously pursue investigations. The AHA staffers agreed to speak because they say they have lost hope in the potential for meaningful reform unless outside pressure is brought to bear. (They all have insisted on maintaining their anonymity for fear of retribution.)

* 10 Former Players Sue NHL Over Concussions.

* As Costs Are Cut, Inmates Fill Gap in Fighting Wildfires.

African-American girl faces expulsion over ‘natural hair.’ The school has elected not to get sued into oblivion at this time.

First Business Licensed To Sell Recreational Marijuana.

* 23andMe gets a letter from the FDA. My deadly genetic disease was just a bug.

* Adam Roberts is annoyed that hypertrophic spoilerphobia won’t let him write a proper review of Maddaddam (though he basically does anyway).

To be clear, shale drilling has created jobs, particularly in Pennsylvania and West Virginia, and cushioned some drilling-intensive areas in these states from the worst effects of the Great Recession and the weak recovery. The number of actual shale jobs created, however, is far below industry claims. Shale employment remains a small share of overall employment and has made little difference in job growth in any of the six states studied.

Being a professor is like having a white collar job.

The compounding disadvantages of adjunct life.

What Alt-Ac Can Do, and What It Can’t.

The national conservative movement is waging a war… in SeaTac. That’s a weird sentence. Out of all the places to wage a political fight, why would conservatives and the infamous Koch Brothers choose a Pacific Northwest village of 26,000 that most Americans have probably never heard of?

A guide to surviving Obamacare debates at Thanksgiving. How To Pick a Fight With Your Relatives This Thanksgiving.

* And Three Weeks Before Vladimir Nabokov’s Lolita, There Was Dorothy Parker’s. 

Sunday Morning

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* Scientific American majorly blows it after one of their writers is called an “urban whore” for declining to write for Biology Online for free. Unreal. When Does an Academic Become a Whore?

* Al-Jeddi: the BBC profiles Arab science fiction.

* The commission is expected to note that for the first time, a grandmother in her 80s can expect to enjoy higher living standards than someone in their 20s even if they are working, due to housing costs and poor wages.

The Air Force on Friday fired the general in charge of all land-based nuclear missiles, the second time in a week that a senior commander of the country’s nuclear arsenal has been let go for allegations of personal misconduct.

Markets are in the end man-made devices for utilitarian purposes, not a force of nature that we should not try to resist.

* Let Them Eat MOOCs.

Seen from this perspective, the techno-democratization of education looks like a cover story for its aristocratization. MOOCs aren’t digital keys to great classrooms’ doors. At best, they are infomercials for those classrooms. At worst, they are digital postcards from gated communities.

Thomas Friedman Writes for the International House of Pancakes Menu.

The Latest Voter Suppression Fad.

* Werner Herzog and Cormac McCarthy talk science and art with Lawrence Krauss. The only way this could be more perfect is if it were all Paul F. Tompkins impersonations.

* And the biggest comics news in years: Marvel To Republish Miracleman From January 2014, To Its Never-Before-Seen Conclusion.