Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth

Posts Tagged ‘France

However Many Links You Think There Are In This Post, There Are Actually More Links Than That

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9710380815_b64e98462e_b* First, they cast Paul Rudd as Ant-Man, and I said nothing.

* de Boer v. Schuman re: Hopkins. It’s not the supply, it’s the demand.

The Mundane Afrofuturist Manifesto.

Earth’s Quietest Place Will Drive You Crazy in 45 Minutes.

If I worked at Kansas University, this post might get me fired.

* Rortybomb v. the social safety net.

* Charlie Stross v. Bitcoin.

* X-tend the Allegory: What if the X-Men actually were black? Essay version. Via.

“Men’s Rights” Trolls Spammed Us With 400 Fake Rape Reports.

The Coming ‘Instant Planetary Emergency.’ It’s already here. 96 Percent Of Network Nightly News’ Coverage Of Extreme Weather Doesn’t Mention Climate Change. The year in fossil fuel disasters.

* “Unfathomable”: Why Is One Commission Trying to Close California’s Largest Public College? ACCJC Gone Wild.

San Jose State University has all but ended its experiment to offer low-cost, high-quality online education in partnership with the massive open online course provider Udacity after a year of disappointing results and growing dismay among faculty members.

Data Mining Exposes Embarrassing Problems For Massive Open Online Courses.

CSU-Pueblo revising budget downward; up to 50 jobs at risk, loss of $3.3M.

* For-Profit College Oakbridge Academy Of Arts Suddenly Shuts Down.

* “This kid was dealt a bad hand. I don’t know quite why. That’s just the way God works. Sometimes some of us are lucky and some of us are not,” the billionaire told Politicker, calling her plight “a sad situation.”

In Defense of ‘Entitlements.’

* The way we die now.

* Oh, I see, there’s your problem right there. Links continue below the graph.

IncomeGuide_2013_Jan17_RGB_page-11_11

“It is simply no longer possible to believe much of the clinical research that is published, or to rely on the judgment of trusted physicians or authoritative medical guidelines. I take no pleasure in this conclusion, which I reached slowly and reluctantly over my two decades as an editor of The New England Journal of Medicine.”

* World’s first full-size Lego car can hit 20 mph, powered by insane, 256-cylinder compresed air engine.

Scott Walker signals he will sign school mascot bill.

Thieves steal risqué calendars, leave protest signs.

* DC Passes Great Minimum Wage and Paid Sick Days Bills. What’s in Them?

* France institutes a carbon tax.

Community Season 5 Feels Like An Old Friend Has Finally Come Home.

62 Percent of Restaurant Workers Don’t Wash Their Hands After Handling Raw Beef.

* Mars by night.

* Shock in Ohio: No evidence of plot to register non-citizen voters. That only proves how successful the conspiracy has been!

* Wow: Tampa Toddler Thriving After Rare 5-Organ Transplant.

* The Decline of the US Death Penalty. Still illegal to murder people in Detroit (maybe). 15 Things That We Re-Learned About the Prison Industrial Complex in 20123. Data Broker Removes Rape-Victims List After Journal Inquiry.

* The true story of the original “welfare queen.”

Calling IN: A Less Disposable Way of Holding Each Other Accountable.

* The 16 Colleges and Universities Where It’s Hardest to Get an A.

* Michael Pollan on plant intelligence.

Signs Taken as Wonders: Žižek and the Apparent Interpreter.

Marriage equality reaches New Mexico.

A vigil planned as a peaceful remembrance of a teen killed in police custody ended with tear gas and arrests Thursday night in downtown Durham.

* An oral history of the Cones of Dunshire.

* On scarcity and the Federation.

* “Characters” trailer for The Grand Budapest Hotel.

* And ion has your science fiction postage stamps.

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Written by gerrycanavan

December 19, 2013 at 9:20 pm

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Saturday!

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* Malala Yousafzai charms Jon Stewart, confronts Obama, advocates socialism.

* Just another massive early-autumn blizzard in South Dakota, nothing to see here.

* New drug could prevent cell death from Alzheimer’s, Huntington’s, and Parkinson’s.

This Is Your Brain On Poetry.

* Professors and Adjuncts Unite, Win Raises, Job Security in First Contract.

Boy, 15, kills himself after ‘facing expulsion and being put on sex offender registry’ for STREAKING at high school football game.

There’s No Crying at the Pee Wee Super Bowl: The Rigors of Youth Football. High School Football Coach Encourages Player To Shake Off Cognitive Impairment.

* Finally: House Members Announce New Path Forward to Open the Government through a Discharge Petition. Shutdown’s Quiet Toll, From Idled Research to Closed Wallets. But the first thing we do, let’s kill all the mice.

* Old continuity or I crash the economy: Bob Orci is reportedly talking to CBS about a new Star Trek TV series.

Comedian pranks TedX at Drexel University.

France’s Ban On Fracking Is ‘Absolute.’

South Carolina Man Gets Off Thanks To ‘Stand Your Ground’ After Shooting And Killing Innocent Bystander.

Living Man Told He Is Legally Dead By Court.

I got hired at a Bangladesh sweatshop. Meet my 9-year-old boss,.

While we celebrate the ghouls and goblins of October, Elaine M. Will’s webcomic Look Straight Ahead depicts a different sort of horror. High school senior Jeremy loses his connection with reality as he falls into the grips of bipolar disorder.

…for the true and democratically minded critic, “technology” is just a slick, depoliticized euphemism for the neoliberal regime itself. To attack technology today is not to attack the Enlightenment – no, it is to attack neoliberalism itself.

* I’m taking a quick break from ignoring Glenn Beck to note how terrible a person Glenn Beck is.

* And a New California Law Will Allow Children More Than Two Legal Parents. As long as none of the parents is Glenn Beck, I’m on board.

Tuesday Morning

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* #AltAc megapost: Humanities Unbound: Careers & Scholarship Beyond the Tenure Track.

* Decadence watch: Flights Delayed Across Country Amid Budget-Cut Furloughs of Air Controllers.

Reddit wants you to know it is sorry. Time to focus on its core competencies of creepshots and porn.

World’s energy nearly as dirty today as it was 20 years ago.

France Legalizes Gay Marriage After Harsh Debate.

France legalized gay marriage on Tuesday after a wrenching national debate and protests that flooded the streets of Paris. Legions of officers and water cannon stood ready near France’s National Assembly ahead of the final vote, bracing for possible violence on an issue that galvanized the country’s faltering conservative movement.

The measure passed easily in the Socialist-majority Assembly, 331-225, just minutes after the president of the legislative body expelled a disruptive protester in pink, the color adopted by French opponents of gay marriage.

I have a lot of questions.

* REPORT: Hundreds Of Immigrants Are Being Deported From Their Hospital Beds.

* Tumblr of the day: http://100percentmen.tumblr.com.

* Detroit Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr stated in letters to the Michigan Employee Relations Commission (MERC) that it is within his power to end collective bargaining in the city. Specifically, Orr claimed he is under no legal obligation to participate in bargaining or compulsory arbitration with public safety employees, including police, firefighters and emergency medical responders.

Tons of Weekend Links

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* “Austerity is not inevitable”: France falls to the Red Menace.

* Podcast of the weekend: Global science fiction on WorldCanvass, with Brooks Landon, Rob Latham, Istvan Csicsery-Ronay, and others.

* Charlie Stross prophesies the death of science fiction.

But anyway, to summarize: my point is that our genre sits uneasily within boundaries delineated by the machinery of sales. And that creaking steam-age machinery is currently in the process of being swapped out for some kind of irridescent, gleaming post-modern intrusion from the planet internet. New marketing strategies become possible, indeed, become essential. And the utility of the old signifiers—the rocket ship logo on the spine of the paperback—diminish in the face of the new (tagging, reader recommendations, “if you liked X you’ll love Y” cross-product correlations by sales engines, custom genre-specific cover illustrations, and so on).

* Tom Hayden remembers the Port Huron Statement (or at least the compromise second draft).

* Joe Biden endorses marriage equality for about fifteen minutes.

Black Studies Hitpiece Leads to Chronicle of Higher Ed Twitter Trainwreck. Why Is the Chronicle of Higher Education Publishing A Racist Hack? Grad Students Respond to Riley Post on African-American Studies. The Inferiority of Blackness as a Subject. Anti-intellectualism, déjà vu.

When copyright term-extension meets infinite life-extension.

* A tribute to Disneyland’s secret restroom.

* Connecticut continues its recent spate of being decent its citizens, legalizes medical medicine.

* Stand for your ground: A Florida woman faces prison after firing a warning shot to scare off an abusive husband.

* Nerds assemble! Joss Whedon finally made something everybody likes. An interview. Another. Whedon on Batman. Whedon on Wonder Woman.

* The Avengers: Will superhero movies never end?

What I see in “The Avengers,” unfortunately, is a diminished film despite its huge scale, and kind of a bore. It’s a diminishment of Whedon’s talents, as he squeezes himself into an ill-fitting narrative straitjacket, and it’s a diminished form that has become formula, that depends entirely on minor technical innovations and leaves virtually no room for drama or tragedy or anything else that might make the story actually interesting. To praise the movie lavishly, as so many people have done and will continue to do, basically requires making endless allowances. It’s really good (for being a comic-book movie). It’s really good (for being almost exactly like dozens of other things). It’s really good (for being utterly inconsequential).

* Today’s single chart that explains everything.

* The football suicides. More players file concussion lawsuits against the NFL. Will the NFL still exist in 20 years?

* The internship scam.

How the Blind Are Reinventing the iPhone.

* Save the Holocene! Why “the Anthropocene” might not be a useful construct.

* Do you remember Frank Kunkel? How about Frank Nowarczyk? John Marsh or Robert Erdman? Johann Zazka? Martin Jankowiak? Not even Michael Ruchalski? Do you remember the call “Eight hours for labor, eight hours for rest, eight hours for recreation?” The names are those of the seven of the nine people killed in 1886 in Bay View, Wisconsin for demanding eight hour work days.

* On Colorado’s policy of sending kids to adult court.

* A report by the ABA shows that some law schools hire as many as 15% of new graduates in an effort to boost employment numbers.

* Consider the case of Toby Groves.

* New Police Strategy in New York: Sexual Assault Against Peaceful Protesters.

* North Carolina’s Ban on Gay Marriage Appears Likely to Pass.

* Since Mexico’s legislative body passed sweeping climate change legislation on April 19, Mexico joins the UK as the only two countries in the world with legally binding emissions goals to combat climate change.

http://thebiblein100days.tumblr.com/

* American Airlines channels Darth Vader: We are altering the deal. Pray we do not alter it further.

* And Stephen Colbert’s employment of the comedic stylings of German Ambassador Hans Beinholtz continues to be my absolute favorite thing of all time.

‘The Only Thing That Any One Wants Now Is to Be Free, to Be Let Alone, to Live Their Life as They Can, but Not to be Watched, Controlled and Scared, No No, Not’

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Written by gerrycanavan

December 23, 2011 at 9:43 am

Wednesday Night Links

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* Breaking Bad aficionados will enjoy Bryan Cranston’s recent appearances on the Nerdist and WTF with Marc Meron, the latter of which has the (new-to-me) tidbit that Jesse was slotted to be killed off in the first few episodes; he was saved from death by the awesomeness of Aaron Paul.

* Wisconsin wants to mess with the Electoral College, too. You’ll be shocked to learn the Koch brothers are involved.

* So the U.S. government doesn’t actually have “hard evidence” Iran tried to murder the Saudi ambassador. I feel like I’ve seen this movie before.

* TPM and @fivethirtyeight (1, 2, 3) have been talking today about the fact that Romney (while unquestionably “inevitable”) has clearly hit his support ceiling in the Republican primary. The Anti-Romney has shifted through several alternatives, but the support never settles on Romney; it just keeps casting about for some new savior, Bachmann, Perry, Christie, and currently Herman Cain. It’s just more fodder for my “Draft Jeb” conspiracy theory…

* Beka Economopolis on Occupy Wall Street: We must draw a line, disavow the Democrats explicitly, make our messaging a little uncomfortable. Yes, perhaps, split the support, lest we not be co-opted. This will be painful, internally, as it won’t always achieve comfortable consensus. But to hold this space and expand the realm of possibility, we have to go farther than others are ready to go.

* Matt Taibbi on Occupy Wall Street.

* The Big Picture blog on Occupy Everywhere.

* Kevin Drum and Paul Waldman on the GOP’s astounding Medicare reality distortion field.

1. Health care in general, and Medicare in particular, are bankrupting our country.
2. But government should never try to figure out which treatments are effective.
3. Medicare should pay for any treatment anyone wants, regardless of whether it works or what it costs.
4. If an insurance company refuses to pay for a procedure, that’s their right as actors in the free market; if Medicare refuses to pay for a procedure, that’s Washington bureaucrats trying to kill you.
5. We need to cut Medicare benefits, because don’t forget it’s bankrupting our country.

* The fiends! In an effort to promote healthful eating and, it has been suggested, to protect traditional Gallic cuisine, the French government has banned school and college cafeterias nationwide from offering ketchup with any food but — of all things — French fries.

* Australia has passed a carbon tax.

* Imagine there’s no peanut butter.

* And Polling Shows North Carolina Faces Uphill Battle To Defeat Anti-Gay Marriage Amendment. Honestly, how are we even still arguing about this?

Last Night in London Links

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* Once again xkcd shows off its uncanny knack for reading my mind: “There are two or three songs out there with beeps in the chorus that sound exactly like the clock radio alarm I had in high school, and hearing it makes me think my life since junior year has been a dream I’m about to wake up from.”

* Zissou, Simpsonized.

* So that settles it, we’re never leaving: Oilfield With Estimated 1.8 Billion Barrels Of Oil Identified In Afghanistan.

* Wheat beats white for the first time ever.

* Also in food news: I guess I’m the last to know they’ve been cloning meat and milk for sale in the U.S. Gross.

* More on the future of renewable energy in North Carolina, in Independent Weekly.

* I think this study comes as close to proving that men are scum as any could: Men are more likely to cheat if they earn less money than their female partner, but they’re also more likely to cheat if their partners are financially dependent on them…

* If temperatures were not warming, the number of record daily highs and lows being set each year would be approximately even. Instead, for the period from January 1, 2000, to September 30, 2009, the continental United States set 291,237 record highs and 142,420 record lows, as the country experienced unusually mild winter weather and intense summer heat waves.

* France urged to repay $23 billion in compensation to Haiti. Sounds like a good start.

* Your moral coward of the night: Harry Reid.

* Your morally odious moron of the night: Ross Douthat, who apparently believes violence, intolerance, and discrimination are essential and praiseworthy components of America’s liberal tradition.

* And I really can’t believe I’m getting sucked into this nonsense, but all right: Photos of Stuff the Same Distance from the World Trade Center as the “Ground Zero Mosque.”

World Cup Day 1

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That was a great South Africa-Mexico match today, and the last ten minutes or so of the otherwise dull Uruguay-France match (after Uruguay stopped trying to do anything but defend) were pretty thrilling too. But tomorrow is the big one: US-England! 1950 was the last time we beat England! Doesn’t look good! USA! USA!

Written by gerrycanavan

June 11, 2010 at 4:56 pm

Some Links for Tuesday

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* In the wake of the passage of the Affordable Care Act, insurance companies have announced new plans to screw sick kids for money. As the Eschaton link notes, strategies to deny coverage to their captive customers are always, necessarily, a huge part of the business model for these companies. This is why they’re so hard to effectively regulate. I sincerely wish we could find the political will for single payer, if only to stop Nicholas Sarkosy’s taunts.

* Job growth in March? That’s not just good news for March, that’s good news for Democrats in November.

* How to repossess an airplane. Via MeFi. Also via MeFi:

* Cuba in the 1930s.
* Back to the Hugos and Blogging the Hugos.
* Scarface as school play. This seemed so much more endearing in Rushmore.
* Change we can believe in: Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood announces “the end of favoring motorized transportation at the expense of non-motorized.”

* Will Smith to make two totally unnecessary Independence Day sequels. The title? Of course, it’s ID4-Ever. This is the monster who is ruining Foundation. He must be stopped.

* And the end of independent bookstores. Lots of factors here, of which the iPhone/Droid “barcode scanner” is just the latest. It’s terrible to watch.

Žižek on Haiti

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Haiti was an exception from the very beginning, from its revolutionary fight against slavery, which ended in independence in January 1804. “Only in Haiti,” Hallward notes, “was the declaration of human freedom universally consistent. Only in Haiti was this declaration sustained at all costs, in direct opposition to the social order and economic logic of the day.” For this reason, “there is no single event in the whole of modern history whose implications were more threatening to the dominant global order of things”. The Haitian Revolution truly deserves the title of repetition of the French Revolution: led by Toussaint ‘Ouverture, it was clearly “ahead of his time”, “premature” and doomed to fail, yet, precisely as such, it was perhaps even more of an event than the French Revolution itself. It was the first time that an enslaved population rebelled not as a way of returning to their pre-colonial “roots”, but on behalf of universal principles of freedom and equality. There’s much more at the link, including consideration of punitive debt levied against Haiti by France and the multiple U.S.-sponsored coups against the Lavalas movement. The piece is from 2008. Via Daniel Trilling, via @Mariborchan.

Written by gerrycanavan

January 13, 2010 at 7:50 pm

More!

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* Ireland wants a rematch against France, but FIFA says it won’t happen. More here.

* Kurt Vonnegut’s letter home as a POW, 1944.

* The headline reads, “IBM makes supercomputer significantly smarter than cat.”

* Eric Barker calls this New York Times article on DNA testing and parental rights “thought-provoking”, and I suppose it is—but mostly I was completely aghast at the idea that a father would desert his child after a decade just because the child turned out to be “not really his,” “someone else’s kid.” Speaking off the cuff, it seems to me the best solution here would probably just be to change the law to allow children to have more than two legal parents—but regardless of the legal question there’s a clear ethical imperative to remain a parent the child you have raised and claim to love, whatever the mother might have done or said in the past. In some sense this actually seems to me to be beyond ethics, or rather before; it seems to me you’d want to stay the child’s father, that you’d be desperate to, in whatever way you could.

* Autocomplete Me is a blog devoted to revealing the weirdest gems in Google’s autocomplete feature. (Hat tip: Neil.)

* The Board of Regents for the University of California system has voted to raise tuition 32% over 2008. How the University Works declares California is burning.

* Troubled times in Casino City. Via Atrios.

* Stopping ACTA. Via Boing Boing.

* Dump Geithner: A growing consensus?

* Good and bad polling news: Even Fox News viewers overwhelmingly think the bow was appropriate (good news), but 52% of Republicans think ACORN stole 9.5 million votes in the 2008 election to put Obama in the White House (bad news). Naturally, ACORN stole NY-23 as well.

* Meanwhile, 52% of Americans are shockingly misinformed about whether an army of gorillas could beat an army of bears.

* And the news story that launched a thousand 2010 puns: there could be fishlike life on Europa. All these puns are yours, except Europa. Attempt no punning there.

More on the Nobel

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Written by gerrycanavan

October 10, 2008 at 12:17 am

Hooray for Mondays

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Hooray for Mondays.

* Yesterday we went to New York to see After Nature at the New Museum and Rififi—the film that singlehandedly gave birth to the very idea of French film noir, according to a quote Ryan saw in the newspaper—at the Film Forum’s French Crime Wave series. I officially pronounce both things Worth Doing™, with an extra-special deliciousness shout-out to Kate’s Joint at 58 Avenue B in the East Village.

* Rest in peace, Isaac Hayes.

* YouTube video tribute to Jack Kirby, king of comics. Via MeFi.

* I’ve already made what I consider the definitive comment on election polling, but in case you need more I recommend Matthew Yglesias’s post today on tracking polls:

Or maybe none of that happened. As everyone knows, there’s sampling error associated with polling. As a result, if you poll 1,000 people on August 1 and then you poll 1,000 different people on August 2 you shouldn’t be surprised to see the results differ by several percentage points even in the absence of any change in the underlying public opinion. Beyond that, doing one poll per day throughout a long campaign would mean that you’d expect to see one or two relatively rare outlier results per month even under circumstances of total stasis. And as Alan Abramowitz points out if you look at the daily results this is actually what you see — incredible volatility with Obama’s lead oscillating violently around an average of 3-4 points. Since it’s not plausible that the public mood is really swinging anywhere near as rapidly as a very naive reading of the Gallup daily results would suggest, people could see that this is basically statistical noise in a stable race.

But Gallup doesn’t report its daily results, they report a multi-day rolling average. Abramowitz notes that if you report a ten day rolling average, you get a chart where nothing happens — Obama maintains a flat lead of 3-4 points. Again, a stable race. But if instead of doing either of those things you do what Gallup actually does and report a three day rolling average, you get these pleasant looking peaks and valleys in the race. The change over time here is large enough in magnitude (unlike on the ten day chart) but also slow enough in pace (unlike on the one day chart) to be plausibly interpreted as public opinion shifting in response to events. And since the human mind is designed to recognize patterns and construct narratives, and since it suits the interests of campaign journalists to write narratives, people interpret the peaks and valleys of the three day average as real shifts in public opinion. But while I have no way of proving that it’s just statistical noise and nothing’s really happening, the “nothing happening” narrative is completely consistent with the data, and it’s telling that the conventional narratives collapse when the data is presented in different ways whereas the “noise” narrative is consistent with multiple ways of displaying the information.

I’ll only add that given the extent to which polls serve as a bulwark for functional democracy and accountable elections, the increasing sensationalization of polls as a means to drive news ratings rather than to reliably monitor public opinion is a very, very disturbing trend.

Polls should be boring. They should be so boring no one cares what they say.

* And Jesse Taylor has the best hypothetical history of the presidential primary I’ve seen:

Any number of things could have swayed the primary. But at the end of the day, Clinton apologizing for her Iraq vote (or just not having voted that way in the first place) would have guaranteed her the nomination. Or her running for Senate in Illinois.

I really think that’s right. If she’d decided to run for Senate in Illinois rather than New York, she’d have had it.

Written by gerrycanavan

August 11, 2008 at 2:54 pm

Friday Night Environmentalism

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Friday night environmentalism.

* Researchers at MIT have apparently achieved a major breakthrough in battery technology, making solar that much more practical as a potential alternative energy source for the post-cheap-oil world. More at MeFi and Daily Kos.

* Unprecedented warming, melting forces Arctic tourist evacuation. Global warming is a myth.

* How much oil can be found in Americans’ car — through more efficient driving and better vehicle maintenance? Using current numbers from the Bush DOE and EPA , the answer appears to be some 2.5 to 3 million barrels a day — 20 times what could be found if we ended the congressional moratorium on offshore drilling and three times the oil we are likely to find in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.

* And Climate Progress demystifies the French nuclear power system, elaborating on just what it would mean for the U.S. to adopt a similar program here:

“If France can produce 80% of its electricity with nuclear power, why can’t we?”

McCain seems to forget we are a much, much larger country than France. Heck, we already have more nuclear reactors than they do. To achieve McCain’s goal, we’d need 500 to 700+ new nuclear reactors plus 5 to 7 Yucca mountains, at a cost of some $4 trillion. Not to mention the soaring electricity bills Americans would have to suffer through, with electricity from new nukes projected at some $0.15 a kilowatt hour — some 50% higher than current national rates — not even counting transmission (or reprocessing).

There’s more at the link, particularly some needed stats on the subject of nuclear fuel recycling and nuclear safety. I’ve been warming to the possibility of nuclear energy as an unavoidable component of our attempts to keep technological civilization afloat; maybe I’ll have to rethink that…