Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth

Posts Tagged ‘Communist propaganda

Another Sad Monday

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enhanced-buzz-7300-1379098881-2* Alarm sounds as humanity breaks quarantine.

* Bargaining unit faculty members have no expectation of privacy in emails, files, documents, or other information created or stored on university information assets. The university may monitor the use of, and review documents and other information stored on university information assets. Emails sent on a bargaining unit faculty member’s non-university email account and information created or stored on non-university computer systems belong to the bargaining unit member except to the extent that they address work-related subjects.

A Catholic Case Against MOOCs.

* White flight goes to college.

* Sorry, it’s Buzzfeed, but: 19 Fascinating Examples Of Soviet Space Propaganda Posters.

Was Plato an executive producer on Deep Space 9?

* Police Shoot into Crowd at Time Square. Charlotte police kill unarmed man who may have been running to them for help.

De-colonising anarchism.

60 Wisconsin bridges in danger categories, review finds. Compare that number to 10% of bridges nationally.

* A brief history of Detroit’s bankruptcy.

Where Have All the Digital Humanities Jobs Gone?

AMC is developing a Walking Dead spinoff for 2015. Working title The Walking Money Grab.

This Time There Really Will Be a Government Shutdown.

* The ‘Breaking Bad’ Spinoff ‘Better Call Saul’ With an 80s Style Intro.

And a new study of twins shows that kids who acquire language early may tend to become heavier drinkers who start drinking earlier. Don’t talk to your kids! For their own good! For their own good!

Lots of Thursday Links

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* The unpredictable Republican presidential race has taken another surprising turn as recent numbers show Mongol warlord Genghis Khan seizing the lead in national polls of likely GOP primary voters.

* Santorum leading in Ohio. Obama leading everywhere.

* You had me at hello: Soviet Space Propaganda Posters.

* Part two of Boston Review‘s interview with David Graeber is up.

DJ: In my most cynical days as an academic, I thought of a professorship as the carrot that the establishment offers to make sure that smart people don’t run amok. “Give them a nice little office and a job that’s very stable, and put them in the ivory tower, and they won’t cause any trouble.”

DG: Did you ever read C.B. Macpherson’s theory of the university? It’s similar to that, and it’s actually quite clever. He makes the argument that universities have traditionally fulfilled a kind of court jester role. What is the problem you have if you’re the guy in charge, if you’re a king? It’s that you’re surrounded by yes-men. So there’s nobody there who’s going to tell you if you have a really bad idea. They’ll agree with anything you say. So you need someone who will actually point out when you’re going off the tracks. You’ll also need to make sure that person isn’t taken seriously. So you get a hunchbacked dwarf to tell you a silly rhyme, telling you why your plan is idiotic. And you get to know that your plan is idiotic and think about it, and everybody else says, “OK, hunchbacked dwarf, you talk to the king, that’s fine.” Universities are pretty much the same thing. They’re there to come up with all the reasons why current policies are misguided, why, you know, the current economic systems might not be ideal. They come up with all the alternate perspectives, but they frame it in a way that nobody takes it particularly seriously or can even understand it.

* Life Lessons from The Lion King.

2) The rest of us should be happy to be ruled over by a group of predatory overlords who will devour us whole should we become sick or weak. Someday, eventually, in a vague and symbolic manner, karma will even things up.

3) Physical strength and charm are the defining characteristics for a leader; someone smart is probably just evil anyway. Don’t listen to them.

* The Angel Problem. Via MeFi.

* Ever since I taught The Sheep Look Up last week I see something Brunner predicted in the news nearly every day. Today’s depressing entry: Air Pollution Linked to Cognitive Decline in Women. Now, the dataset was all women, so it’s probably really “air pollution linked to cognitive decline in everyone.” Enjoy your weekend!

…over the past year, the Obama administration has quietly unleashed a multi­agency crackdown on medical cannabis that goes far beyond anything undertaken by George W. Bush. The feds are busting growers who operate in full compliance with state laws, vowing to seize the property of anyone who dares to even rent to legal pot dispensaries, and threatening to imprison state employees responsible for regulating medical marijuana. With more than 100 raids on pot dispensaries during his first three years, Obama is now on pace to exceed Bush’s record for medical-marijuana busts. “There’s no question that Obama’s the worst president on medical marijuana,” says Rob Kampia, executive director of the Marijuana Policy Project. “He’s gone from first to worst.”

* New Jersey expected to approve gay marriage; Christie vows veto.

* “All-male House GOP leadership gets all-male witness panel to agree that all-male Catholic hierarchy should set contraceptives policy.”  More here, here, here…

* The Wisconsin Uprising, One Year Later.

* And the Telegraph profiles the Boss.

He does, however, see cause for optimism. “The Occupy Wall Street movement has been powerful about changing the national conversation. The Tea Party set the conversation for a while but now people are talking about economic equality. That’s a conversation America hasn’t had for 20 years.”

There is also a religious dimension to Springsteen’s latest songs. The album shifts towards the spiritual uplift of gospel music in its rousing finale, evoking Jesus and the risen dead. “I got brainwashed as a child with Catholicism,” joked Springsteen, who says biblical imagery increasingly creeps into his songs almost unbidden. “Its like Al Pacino in The Godfather: I try to get out but they pull you back in! Once a Catholic, always a Catholic.”

Random Snippets of My Day

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Some random snippets I’ve been collecting over the day:

* When people pondered the dilemmas that required killing someone with their bare hands, several networks in their brains lighted up. One, which included the medial (inward-facing) parts of the frontal lobes, has been implicated in emotions about other people. A second, the dorsolateral (upper and outer-facing) surface of the frontal lobes, has been implicated in ongoing mental computation (including nonmoral reasoning, like deciding whether to get somewhere by plane or train). And a third region, the anterior cingulate cortex (an evolutionarily ancient strip lying at the base of the inner surface of each cerebral hemisphere), registers a conflict between an urge coming from one part of the brain and an advisory coming from another. Steven Pinker on the moral instinct.

* “I don’t want the campaign at this stage to degenerate into so much tit-for-tat, back-and-forth, that we lose sight of why all of us are doing this,” Mr. Obama told reporters at a news conference here. “We’ve got too much at stake at this time in our history to be engaging in this kind of silliness. I expect that other campaigns feel the same way.” Obama tries to put the brakes on the scorched-earth primary. We’ll see if it works. More comment at TPM Election Central andDaily Kos.

* “Share” is Facebookspeak for “advertise”. Sign up to Facebook and you become a free walking, talking advert for Blockbuster or Coke, extolling the virtues of these brands to your friends. We are seeing the commodification of human relationships, the extraction of capitalistic value from friendships. *Seeing?* Where have you been, man? Marx was all over this in 1848.

* Vast areas of the Antarctic ice sheet — which has 10 times as much ice as Greenland — is losing mass much faster than anyone expected. And the rate of ice loss has quickened in the last decade. In fact, 2007’s ice loss was 75% higher than 2006’s. Just imagine how bad this would be if climate change were real…

Written by gerrycanavan

January 15, 2008 at 3:59 am

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Pauline Kael called it “as clear a piece of Communist propaganda as we have had in many years,” but 1953’s Salt of the Earth—widely denounced and then buried in the McCarthyite political climate of its time and the only blacklisted film in American history—is of course nothing of the sort, simply a powerful celebration of bravery, sacrifice, and the transformative power of solidarity in a company town in New Mexico where miners (and eventually, notably, their wives) are forced to strike against their East Coast bosses for nearly a year before negotiations are begun. Based on a real 1951 strike against Empire Zinc in Bayard, NM, the film has only a handful of professional actors, including its lead actress, Rosaura Revueltas, who after the filming was deported to Mexico for her involvement; most of the cast was drawn instead from the local area, including many members of Mine, Mill, and Smelter Workers Local 890.

And it’s in the public domain, so you can watch it on Google Video with an entirely clear conscience.

(via, unsurprisingly, the film class I’m TAing)

Written by gerrycanavan

September 9, 2007 at 1:54 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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