Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth

Posts Tagged ‘Hulu

Wednesday

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* Via everywhere: “A Letter to My Students” from Michael O’Hare.

Now, your infrastructure is falling to pieces under your feet, and as citizens you are responsible for crudities like closing parks, and inhumanities like closing battered women’s shelters. It’s outrageous, inexcusable, that you can’t get into the courses you need, but much worse that Oakland police have stopped taking 911 calls for burglaries and runaway children. If you read what your elected officials say about the state today, you’ll see things like “California can’t afford” this or that basic government function, and that “we need to make hard choices” to shut down one or another public service, or starve it even more (like your university). Can’t afford? The budget deficit that’s paralyzing Sacramento is about $500 per person; add another $500 to get back to a public sector we don’t have to be ashamed of, and our average income is almost forty times that. Of course we can afford a government that actually works: the fact is that your parents have simply chosen not to have it.

* But the news isn’t all bad: Nike has filed a patent on the self-lacing shoes from Back to the Future, Part II.

* Should blogs count toward tenure? Cathy Davidson says yes, but as service work, not publication. More from Chutry, who approves.

* New Jersey in the news! The state lost $400 million in federal education funding for not following directions.

* Trailer for AMC’s The Walking Dead. I’m cautiously optimistic, even if some of this (particularly the washed-out, poorly acted opening scenes) seems really amateurish.

* John Krasinski’s adaptation of Brief Interviews With Hideous Men can be watched on Hulu until September 5. Speaking as a hideous man, I thought it was worth watching.

* “Competitive balance an issue in EPL.” Four 6-0 games in two weeks—you think?

* What’s in the Avatar special edition?

* And presenting the Next Generation that never (but almost) was, starring Wesley Snipes as Geordi La Forge.

Lots of Tuesday Links

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* Steve Benen has another post with more details on the new health care compromise. There’s also more health care coverage from Atul Gawande in the New Yorker this week.

* TPM uncovers something rather interesting in its reporting on the independent investigation stemming from those ACORN videos:

The videos that have been released appear to have been edited, in some cases substantially, including the insertion of a substitute voiceover for significant portions of Mr. O’Keefe’s and Ms. Giles’s comments, which makes it difficult to determine the questions to which ACORN employees are responding.

I certainly hope more specific information on this follows; just how drastic were these voiceover replacements? My bullshitometer must be completely on the fritz; even granting the videos were plainly disingenuous, I never really considered the possibility they could be out-and-out frauds.

* Science finally explains why I’m such a terrible sibling/husband/colleague/person: It’s all my younger brother’s fault.

* James Fallows compares Climategate coverage in the New York Times and the Washington Post and discovers the Post is terrible. Weird to see Time of all places getting the story basically right:

According to PSU’s Mann, that statistical “trick” that Jones refers to in one e-mail — which has been trumpeted by skeptics — simply referred to the replacing of proxy temperature data from tree rings in recent years with more accurate data from air temperatures. It’s an analytical technique that has been openly discussed in scientific journals for over a decade — hardly the stuff of conspiracy.

As for Mann and Jones’ apparent effort to punish the journal Climate Research, the paper that ignited his indignation is a 2003 study that turned out to be underwritten by the American Petroleum Institute. Eventually half the editorial board of the journal quit in protest. And even if CRU’s climate data turns out to have some holes, the group is only one of four major agencies, including NASA, that contribute temperature data to major climate models — and CRU’s data largely matches up with the others’.

It’s true that the e-mails reveal CRU climate scientists were dismissive of skeptics, often in harsh terms, but that’s not unusual for scientists. Science is a rough arena, as anyone who has ever survived a doctoral examination knows, and scientists aren’t shy about attacking ideas they believe are wrong — especially in private communication. Still, Jones et al. could have been more open and accepting of their critics, and if it turns out that e-mails were deleted in response to the Freedom of Information request for data, heads should roll. (Jones maintains that no e-mails or documents were deleted.)

Ultimately, though, we need to place Climategate/Swifthack in its proper context: amidst a decades-long effort by the fossil-fuel industry and other climate skeptics to undercut global-warming research — often by means that are far more nefarious than anything that appears in the CRU e-mails.

* [Many] More Americans Believe in Angels than Global Warming. Both climate change and evolution edge out ghosts and UFOs by only a few percent.

* But don’t worry: ‘Forget Earth – let’s move to Mars!’ Ecological crisis solved.

* Ecology as ideology: How China uses environmental rhetoric to justify displacing minority groups.

* History as the nightmare from which we are trying to awake: Ta-Nehisi Coates on Barack Obama, slavery, and white guilt.

* Film School Rejects considers the culturally significant films of the decade. New York Magazine says the ’00s is when TV became art. More lists from Fimoculous’s annual list of lists. Kottke’s doing one too.

* How the Apocalypse Would Happen if Heaven Were a Small Non-Profit.

* LRB pans Woody Allen’s two most recent films, Vicky Cristina Barcelona and Whatever Works, which we watched this week and about which I concur entirely (though Larry David almost rescues Whatever Works.)

* Whiskey Fire reviews Stanley Fish’s review of Going Rogue.

* Another 100 Greatest Quotes from The Wire.

* And Twitter is ablaze with news that Mystery Science Theater is now on Hulu.

Flashforward

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I want to give a tentative endorsement to Flashforward, the latest entrant in “the next Lost” sweepstakes. I’ve heard complaints that the pilot was dull, but I didn’t find it to be—and the talk from the producers suggests something like a coherent long-term plan has already been sketched out. I’m a notorious sucker for time travel plots but I think it could be good.

The pilot is on Hulu; give it a whirl.

Written by gerrycanavan

September 27, 2009 at 7:31 pm

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‘Spaced’

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The full run of classic British sitcom Spaced (from Simon Pegg of Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz fame) is now available on Hulu. Jaimee and I Netflixed this a few months ago; it’s a decade old, but I thought it held up really well.

Written by gerrycanavan

July 25, 2009 at 12:58 am

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Thursday Night Links

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Thursday night links.

* Is the rumored Buffy reboot just a ploy to get Sarah Michelle Gellar on board?

* This brief history of Star Trek reboots makes a persuasive case for the centrality of the “reboot” in the logic of SF franchise.

* Manga collector faces 15 years for comics collection. More at MeFi.

* Hulu has a desktop client.

* Alan Moore’s “Future Shocks” goes digital. These are all good, get to iTunes immediately.

* Today’s bizarre outrage of the day is a Fox-News-backed conspiracy theory that Obama is selectively closing Republican-owned Chrysler dealerships. Nate Silver and Kevin Drum debunk.

* Also at FiveThirtyEight: Operation Gringo: Can the Republicans Sacrifice the Hispanic Vote and Win the White House?