Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth

Posts Tagged ‘Frederick Douglass

Saturday Morning Links!

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* Sci-Fi Author Ted Chiang on Our Relationship to Technology, Capitalism, and the Threat of Extinction.

So intelligent species burn out too quickly to make intergalactic headway—I have to ask, do you think that’s what will happen to us?

I don’t know. We used to think that the biggest threat we faced as a species was nuclear war. Now it looks like it’s global warming. If we survive that, it’d be tempting to think that it’ll smooth sailing afterwards, but any consideration of this question is primarily a reminder of how much we don’t know.

A math equation that predicts the end of humanity.

* America is crumbling.

The struggling US media industry is facing its worst year for job layoffs in a decade as news organizations continue to cut staff and close shop, according to a new survey. And this is before the coming recession hits.

* University Of Alaska Readies For Budget Slash: ‘We May Likely Never Recover.’ Alaska Isn’t a Bellwether. It’s a Swan Song.

Two professors at Miami University are suddenly at risk of losing their jobs over a plant that has been in their collection for over a decade.

* Remembering the strike that brought teachers unions back from the dead.

* A brief history of busing.

* Defeated in the courts, Trump may issue an executive order to try to rig the Census. There are no laws in America, only power.

The anger and hate that spews from 8chan is not a conscious extension of the anger and hate of its creator – though he had plenty – but an inevitable byproduct of the dark structure he built. The story of 8chan’s founder, Fredrick Brennan, is a perfect expression of this: born with a profound disability and shuttled in and out of foster care, his creation of the site was born not out of cold calculation or political ambition, but from a need to find community in loneliness. 8chan is a monster, but its creator had no idea what it would become. He was just a kid.

These profiteers and bureaucrats of the immigration-industrial complex were fresh from the 2019 Border Security Expo—essentially a trade show for state violence, where law enforcement officers and weapons manufacturers gather, per the Expo’s marketing materials, to “identify and address new and emerging border challenges and opportunities through technology, partnership, and innovation.”

* Former ICE Chief Counsel Gets 4 Years In Prison For Stealing Immigrants’ Identities.

* Border officials had known about the secret Facebook group for up to three years, according to a Homeland Security official.

* Meet the people fighting for health care access for disabled kids detained at the border.

DHS watchdog details dangerous conditions for migrants at border centers. What a Pediatrician Saw Inside a Border Patrol Warehouse. The Treatment of Migrants Likely ‘Meets the Definition of a Mass Atrocity.’ “The Whole Facility’s Culture Is Rotted From the Core”: What Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Saw Inside the El Paso Camps. The department is seeking 20-year leases for most of the sites, signaling they don’t expect challenges to fade.

Trump administration ending in-person interpreters at immigrants’ first hearings.

The Exceptional Cruelty of a No-Hugging Policy.

Drawings by migrant children in detention show them in cages.

* ICE Threatens Immigrant in Sanctuary in Chapel Hill With $314,000 Fine.

At a crowded Mexican shelter, migrants wait months to claim asylum. Some opt to cross the river instead.

* “Seth Donnelly was one of the many inmates Texas prison officials use as prey for dog hunts. He died from heatstroke after collapsing on the job in Abilene.” I’m gonna need you to start from the top.

Scholars Push Back on Holocaust Museum’s Rejection of Historical Analogy.

* Happy 4th! Here are some readings on concentration camps.

What to the Slave Is the Fourth of July?

Europe’s Bold Plan for a Moon Base Is Coming Together. How will we deal with squatters on the Moon?

* World’s most full of shit people nearly terminally full of shit.

* Scientists warn that losing another fifth of Brazil’s rainforest will trigger the feedback loop known as dieback, in which the forest begins to dry out and burn in a cascading system collapse, beyond the reach of any subsequent human intervention or regret. This would release a doomsday bomb of stored carbon, disappear the cloud vapor that consumes the sun’s radiation before it can be absorbed as heat, and shrivel the rivers in the basin and in the sky.

* If I knew the world would end tomorrow, I’d plant a tree today.

* “Plan to ban seagulls from the sea suspended.”

* Deep-sea mining to turn oceans into ‘new industrial frontier’.

* Heatstroke warnings in Anchorage.

* Your map to Twitter.

 

How Washington’s Elite Learned to Love Policy Wonks.

* When your email spies on you.

* The arc of history is long, but.

This week, a new law went into effect in Mississippi. The state now bans plant-based meat providers from using labels like “veggie burger” or “vegan hot dog” on their products. Such labels are potentially punishable with jail time. Words like “burger” and “hot dog” would be permitted only for products from slaughtered livestock. Proponents claim the law is necessary to avoid confusing consumers — but given that the phrase “veggie burger” hasn’t been especially confusing for consumers this whole time, it certainly seems more like an effort to keep alternatives to meat away from shoppers.

Scientists are searching for a mirror universe. It could be sitting right in front of you.

Geoengineer the Planet? More Scientists Now Say It Must Be an Option.

* Netflix vs. storytelling.

* Here, the truth is made plain: the childlike nature of corporate branding isn’t a random trend, but part of the mindset that consumers ought to be treated like children. Details are the sinister machinations of faceless authority figures; friendly colors and geometric letters like those on a toddler’s building blocks are comforting by contrast. That each brand looks more or less like the next is only for the better: the world is a little smaller that way, less likely to confuse or frighten. As Jesse Barron wrote for Real Life magazine in 2016, “We’re in the middle of a decade of post-dignity design, whose dogma is cuteness.” Cuteness, employed as these companies do, talks down to you without words.

The Impact of a World Without The Walking Dead.

* The Harry Potter franchise is going to take another crack at a prequel.

* What’s missing in Spider-Man: Far from Home.

* Another take: Far from Home as metafiction.

* And nothing gold can stay: The end of MAD.

Monday Morning Links!

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* A personal announcement: I’ll be the Vice President of the Science Fiction Research Association for the next three years. Thanks for the vote of confidence!

* CFP: “Purple Reign: An interdisciplinary conference on the life and legacy of Prince.”

* Huge, if true: Reading Literature Won’t Give You Superpowers. And meanwhile: What’s Wrong With Literary Studies? Some scholars think the field has become cynical and paranoid. Only some?

Use Data to Make a Strong Case for the Humanities.

* They did it: Army Corps of Engineers Statement Regarding the Dakota Access Pipeline. More from Vox.

* Is there any branch of literature so insecure, so uncertain of its own status, as science fiction?

Inside the world of Chinese science fiction, with “Three Body Problem” translator Ken Liu.

gerrycanavan_2016-dec-04* Marquette in the ne– oh come on.

* Dan Harmon’s story circle at YouTube.

* Trouble in the Heartland: Listening to Springsteen in Wisconsin in 1979.

* Well, that seems fine: GOP rep: Trump has ‘extra-constitutional’ view of presidency. Donald Trump risks China rift with Taiwan call. BREAKING: US President-elect Trump told Rodrigo Duterte that Philippines was conducting its drug war “the right way.” That’s bad. Trump’s education pick says reform can ‘advance God’s Kingdom.’ What the Nazis were doing was not describing what was true, but what would have to be true to justify what they planned to do next. A People’s History of the Third Reich: How Great Man theory allows us to abdicate collective responsibility. Facts are stupid things: Here’s Where Donald Trump Gets His News. Trump and the coming failed state. Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie: Now Is The Time To Talk About What We Are Actually Talking About. Another visit from the goon squad. Trump and the Bush Legacy.

New SPLC reports reveal alarming pattern of hate incidents and bullying across country since election. Note the category just labeled “Trump —  general.”

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* Identity politics and the alt-right.

Premised on the possibilities of political struggle, here was the Douglass Option: “a party in the Southern States among the poor.”

* Seems like this guy is Trump’s very worst pick, clearing a very tough field:

During a tense gathering of senior officials at an off-site retreat, he gave the assembled group a taste of his leadership philosophy, according to one person who attended the meeting and insisted on anonymity to discuss classified matters. Mr. Flynn said that the first thing everyone needed to know was that he was always right. His staff would know they were right, he said, when their views melded to his. The room fell silent, as employees processed the lecture from their new boss.

Flynn also helped promulgate the “Pizzagate” hoax that nearly led to a mass shooting today.

Google, democracy and the truth about internet search.

* Steve Bannon, on the other hand, is winning me over.

It’s true that racism is a powerful and durable force in our politics. But it is also true that Donald Trump is an incompetent clown who ran an amateurish campaign rife with mistakes. The Democrats should have won this election in a landslide. They did not, and there is no nobility or reassurance for them in a narrow loss in the electoral college or a win in the popular vote. And continuing to insist that a Donald Trump win was either some kind of strange fluke or completely inevitable is a recipe for repeated defeat.

* When the Democrats didn’t like monopolies. On not going high when they go low.

* Can the good parts of Obamacare survive Trump?

* Stealing North Carolina.

* Italy votes no.

Friedman just got finished telling us that a black elephant is half black swan, and half elephant in the room that will inevitably become a black swan. But now that half-swan, half swan-within-an-elephant is being contrasted with a black swan: in the near future, things that are really black elephants will be misidentified as black swans.

* Understanding survivorship bias.

* Podcast idea of the week: Like Random Trek, but for Rod Serling.

Which Famous Actor Hustled Chess Games in New York City?

* Life after Seinfeld.

* Fidel without Illusions.

* What does elephant taste like?

Here’s Why You Should Be Watching Netflix’s Brazilian Sci-Fi Series 3%. And on the SF kick: Aaron Bady explains Westworld.

* there is no reason to assume Uber’s obliteration of local competition across the planet will create a sustainable business in the long term. Costs are costs, even if you’re a monopoly. As long as people have cheaper alternatives (public transport, legs), they will defect if the break-even price is higher than their inconvenience tolerance threshold.

Trump could face the ‘biggest trial of the century’ — over climate change. But really, show’s over, folks.

* The trans brain and gender dysphoria.

This is brilliant and I’m shocked it took the good guys this long to figure it out.

* Some grim news.

* America is already great.

* Kazuo Ishiguro on the coming race of super clones. Never Let Me Go 2: The Revenge.

* Every villain is the hero of their own story.

* And this is pretty much my actual teaching philosophy.

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Written by gerrycanavan

December 5, 2016 at 9:00 am

Posted in Look at what I found on the Internet

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