Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth

Posts Tagged ‘civics

Happy Monday

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* Secret origins of gonzo journalism: “The Kentucky Derby Is Decadent and Depraved,” by Hunter S. Thompson.

What’s so frustrating about really upper class kids who go on to become elite pundits and write stupid stuff about this topic is that, had they any self-awareness whatsoever, they should know all about intergenerational class entrenchment. In most cases, their parents have done everything they can to make sure social mobility remains a myth.

* When a campus building is named for a famous white supremacist. Oh, hi, Duke!

The Melancholy, Crumbling Remains Of Great Socialist Murals.

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* The failures of Title IX. How a Title IX Complaint Is Processed.

Which states have the highest levels of student debt?

How Athletic Departments (And The Media) Fudge The Cost Of Scholarships.

* Partisan politics, segregation, and Milwaukee.

* I worry a bit that giving the 1% the option to become literal vampires might not work out great.

* Samuel R. Delany reviews Star Wars.

A collision of greed, neglect, and mismanagement is endangering young people in America’s college capital while enriching some absentee investors — landlords who maximize profits by packing students into properties — and universities that admit many more students than they can house.

* Devo and Kent State.

* Mad Men and social change.

Where the show has faltered — and where it comes up against its contradictions — is when it attempts to look at those who are no longer living in the Before. So effective in detailing the quiet terrors of the old order, it has been largely unable or unwilling to present anyone who stands for this challenge in a serious way.

* Today in the rule of law: The Harris prohibition has resulted in law enforcement agencies using the stingrays without obtaining a court warrant, because the agencies have interpreted the contract to mean they cannot even tell a judge about their intent to use the devices.

* Milwaukee officer shoots man after struggle at Red Arrow Park. Drunk NYPD Officer Allegedly Shot a Stranger 6 Times.

* Meanwhile people are just straight-up setting up murder traps now in Stand Your Ground states.

The Incidental State: Coercion in the Age of Big Data.

But it turns out that if you consider the facts reported; he wasn’t a genius.  His violations of anti-trust law were obvious crimes.  Instead, his key characteristic was the one we always emphasize is critical about the most fraudulent CEOs – audacity.  Jobs had gotten away with committing so many crimes that he came to believe he was immune from prosecution.

* On crafting a nonwhite Spider-Man. Spider-Man execs kill our dreams of seeing Miles Morales on the big screen. They must really hate money.

To Remember a Lecture Better, Take Notes by Hand.

Want to Go to Mars? It’s Not That Expensive.

* Vulture: Is television art yet?

Path to student loan debt relief for adjuncts just got a little easier–but still a long way to go.

* Ross Douthat hates your loose libertine morals so much he’ll even become a communist to oppose them.

Gun That Can Only Be Fired By Owner Exists but No One Will Sell It Because of New Jersey.

How Much Source Material Does HBO’s Game of Thrones Have Left to Work With? The worst news is: it seems like it’s all Jon Snow stuff…

For ‘Game of Thrones,’ Rising Unease Over Rape’s Recurring Role.

* The secret history of White Coke.

Louis C.K. versus the Common Core.

The Ocean Floor Is Littered with Humanity’s Garbage.

“Let It Go” was inspired by Prince, who also contributed its most memorable line.

* Should we be teaching him civics at such a young age?

* The oldest man on earth lives on the Upper West Side. Take that, Okinawa!

* Fanwanking a reason why there doesn’t seem to be many women in the Star Wars universe.

* Presenting the Wes Anderson cruise.

* And Slate celebrates the world’s best statues.

Grand Byakue, Takazaki, Japan, 137 ft, built in 1936

Wednesday Night

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* “Locked up in the bowels of the medical faculty building here and accessible to only a handful of scientists lies a man-made flu virus that could change world history if it were ever set free.” Via MeFi.

io9 has your alternate-universe Lincoln Memorial.

* Daniel Ellsberg on what it’s like to receive top-secret security clearance.

“First, you’ll be exhilarated by some of this new information, and by having it all — so much! incredible! — suddenly available to you. But second, almost as fast, you will feel like a fool for having studied, written, talked about these subjects, criticized and analyzed decisions made by presidents for years without having known of the existence of all this information, which presidents and others had and you didn’t, and which must have influenced their decisions in ways you couldn’t even guess. In particular, you’ll feel foolish for having literally rubbed shoulders for over a decade with some officials and consultants who did have access to all this information you didn’t know about and didn’t know they had, and you’ll be stunned that they kept that secret from you so well.

“You will feel like a fool, and that will last for about two weeks. Then, after you’ve started reading all this daily intelligence input and become used to using what amounts to whole libraries of hidden information, which is much more closely held than mere top secret data, you will forget there ever was a time when you didn’t have it, and you’ll be aware only of the fact that you have it now and most others don’t….and that all those other people are fools.

“Over a longer period of time — not too long, but a matter of two or three years — you’ll eventually become aware of the limitations of this information. There is a great deal that it doesn’t tell you, it’s often inaccurate, and it can lead you astray just as much as the New York Times can. But that takes a while to learn.

“In the meantime it will have become very hard for you to learn from anybody who doesn’t have these clearances. Because you’ll be thinking as you listen to them: ‘What would this man be telling me if he knew what I know? Would he be giving me the same advice, or would it totally change his predictions and recommendations?’ And that mental exercise is so torturous that after a while you give it up and just stop listening. I’ve seen this with my superiors, my colleagues….and with myself.

“You will deal with a person who doesn’t have those clearances only from the point of view of what you want him to believe and what impression you want him to go away with, since you’ll have to lie carefully to him about what you know. In effect, you will have to manipulate him. You’ll give up trying to assess what he has to say. The danger is, you’ll become something like a moron. You’ll become incapable of learning from most people in the world, no matter how much experience they may have in their particular areas that may be much greater than yours.”

* More on Romnarok from Ezra Klein.

* And Mayor Bloomberg says the NYPD is his “own private army.” I think one of us probably ought to go back to 8th grade civics class. But which one?