Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth

Posts Tagged ‘I want to believe

Monday Morning Links! All of Them! ALL OF THEM

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* Of course you had me at Zelda propaganda posters.

* Special issue of Deletion: Punking Science Fiction.

* Editorial: We Should Create a Honors College to Propagandize on Behalf of the People Who Already Control Everything.

* Victory in Ireland.


* A surprisingly large number of Obama-era ICE and HHS horrors got rediscovered as if they were new to Trump this weekend. This is a case where Trump’s horror truly is as much continuity as break.

* Even despite that continuity, though, we seem to be moving to a new energy state: Taking Children from Their Parents Is A Form of State Terror.

* Fighting spectacle with snores, or why Trump could easily win a second term.

* Is America heading for a new kind of civil war?

* Fascism is back; blame the Internet.

* Genocide in Yemen.

* I was Jordan Peterson’s strongest supporter. Now I think he’s dangerous.

* After a white supremacist killed a protester in Charlottesville in 2017, Facebook pushed to re-educate its moderators about hate speech groups in the US, and spell out the distinction from nationalism and separatism, documents obtained by Motherboard show.

* Wisconsin Prisons Incarcerate Most Black Men In U.S. Milwaukee PD Misconduct Has Cost the City $22 Million Since 2015.

* When a Nashville man named Matthew Charles was released from prison early in 2016 after a sentence reduction, he’d spent almost half his life behind bars. But in a rare move, a federal court ruled his term was reduced in error and ordered him back behind bars to finish his sentence.

* Man, 79, sentenced to 90 days of house arrest in 5-year-old girl’s rape.

* She Went to Interview Morgan Freeman. Her Story Became Much Bigger.

* This has created a problem that has not been seen before: voluntary, intentional, migrating, mobile, functional, litter. The bikes and scooters are disruptive to the locations where they are abandoned and, because they are constantly moving, the issues of abandonment and refuse are constantly cycling (sorry) throughout an urban region. Yesterday’s bike or scooter blight might be around today, or it might move for a few days and then return. In short, the bikes and scooters share a civic pattern similar to that of homelessness. Thus, in an unexpected way, the dockless bikes and scooters are also competing with the homeless for pieces of urban space upon which to temporarily rest.

* Mike Meru, a 37-year-old orthodontist, made a big investment in his education. As of Thursday, he owed $1,060,945.42 in student loans.

* Executives of big U.S. companies suggest that the days of most people getting a pay raise are over, and that they also plan to reduce their work forces further. Also, rich people are going to be needing your blood so they can stay young forever, just FYI.

* Be more like Chipotle, Jerry Brown tells California universities.

* Report Says Rising CO2 Levels Are Ruining Rice. Allergy Explosion Linked to Climate Change.

* For Women of Color, the Child-Welfare System Functions Like the Criminal-Justice System.

Now that’s what I call ideological state apparatus™.

* A new front in the drug war.

* HUGE IF TRUE: Hollywood isn’t on the side of the resistance.

* Teen Vogue and woke capital.

* Antonin Scalia was wrong about the meaning of ‘bear arms.’ I think a better description here is “not even wrong”; originalism is a rhetorical style, not a claim of fact.

* Sexpat Journalists Are Ruining Asia Coverage.

* A People’s History of Superstar Limo, Disney’s “worst attraction ever.”

* Solo crashes and burns, even underperforming Justice League. I haven’t seen it yet, but it certainly sounds like it had it coming. Relatedly: The Ringer takes a deep dive into the now-decanonized Han Solo prequels from the EU.

* Wakanda fans might be interested in the very odd turn the comics have taken. Relatedly: ‘Black Panther’ meets history, and things get complicated.

* Janelle Monáe for President.

* Conducting a posthumous interview with science-fiction author Octavia E. Butler. Your People Will Find You: A Podcast with the Octavia E. Butler Legacy Network. And Ayana Jamieson’s authorized biography of Butler has a Patreon.

* This LARB review of Neal Stephenson and Nicole Galland’s The Rise and Fall of D.O.D.O. made me very interested in reading it.

* Built in 718 AD, Hōshi is the second oldest ryokan (hotel or inn) in the world and, with 46 consecutive generations of the same family running it, is hands down the longest running known family business in history.

* Wendy Brown at UC: What Kind of World Do You Want to Live In?

* Interesting Twitter thread on emergency and the suspension of the law.

* Half the budget, half the fun: A Star Trek World May Be Coming to Universal Studios.

* Power vs. responsibleness. Politics y’all. Existence is objectively good.

* This is an urgent reminder: Mindflayers are not sympathetic.

* As Kip Manley said, this is the flag of the Anthropocene.

* And I want to believe! US aircraft carrier was stalked for days by a UFO travelling at ‘ballistic missile speed’ which could hover above the sea for six days, leaked Pentagon report reveals.

Written by gerrycanavan

May 28, 2018 at 8:15 am

Posted in Look at what I found on the Internet

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Reading® for Sunday™

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* From the archives: Vonnegut on hearing the voice of God on Armistice Day. Image from @watsdn.

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Hello, I’m Mr. Null. My Name Makes Me Invisible to Computers.

Diversity Is Magic: A Roundtable on Children’s Literature and Speculative Fiction.

The Humanities Must Unite or Die. “And.”

* Gasp: High Pay for Presidents Is Not Shown to Yield Any Fund-Raising Payoff.

Novelist Marilynne Robinson warns Stanford audience against utilitarian trends in higher education.

* English departments and original sin, continued.

Campus Cops: Authority Without Accountability.

* The seasons come, the seasons go, / The earth is green or white with snow, / But time and change shall naught avail / To break the friendships formed at Yale.

Academic Journals: The Most Profitable Obsolete Technology in History.

Academic CVs: 10 irritating mistakes.

So You’re Getting a Ph.D.: Welcome to the worst job market in America.

A mind-bending, award-winning science fiction trilogy that expertly investigates the way we live now. I’m quite late, but I’ve been looking forward to reading these. Perhaps I’ll start tonight!

“My beef with Hillary is mainly that she is an enemy of the poor.”

Chile admits Pablo Neruda might have been murdered by Pinochet regime.

The life and slow death of a former Pennsylvania steel town.

* ‘I’m praying for you’: MSF posts grim details from Afghan hospital strike. U.S. Journalists Who Instantly Exonerated Their Government of the Kunduz Hospital Attack, Declaring it an “Accident.”

Kinder Without God: Kids Who Grow Up In A Religious Home Less Altruistic Than Those Without Religion. Relatedly: Atheism contain multitudes.

As it turns out, the non-profit co-op model for health insurance turns out to be unsustainable without government subsidies. More than half of the co-ops have been shut down this year, and nine of the 12 have shut down since October 1, either by HHS or by the states in which they operate.

Middle-Aged White Americans Are Dying of Despair.

* Welcome to Heaven.

Critical Algorithm Studies: A Reading List.

The man who killed the SAT essay.

* Politics is really confusing.

“We are excited to reward the Larry David with $5,000 cash for ‘standing up’ to Donald Trump on Saturday Night Live and speaking the truth about his anti-Latino racism, even though he was joking,” Deport Racism campaign director Luke Montgomery said in the statement.

* The Keystone defeat. Happy version. Unhappy version.

* Apocalypse watch: The Future of Climate Change Is Widespread Civil War.

* How did this ever get out of beta to begin with? Elon Musk Admits Humans Can’t Be Trusted with Tesla’s Autopilot Feature.

* And Sorry, Alien Hunters: No Signs of Life From KIC 8462852. I want to believe! Also this is aliens too.

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Weekend Links!

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* I have a short essay in the New Orleans Review‘s science fiction issue. Check it out! (Sorry, it’s not online.)

* CFP: Special Issue of American Literature: “Queer about Comics.”

* Academics of color experience an enervating visibility, but it’s not simply that we’re part of a very small minority. We are also a desired minority, at least for appearance’s sake. University life demands that academics of color commodify themselves as symbols of diversity—in fact, as diversity itself, since diversity, in this context, is located entirely in the realm of the symbolic. There’s a wound in the rupture between the diversity manifested in the body of the professor of color and the realities affecting that person’s community or communities. I, for example, am a black professor in the era of mass incarceration of black people through the War on Drugs; I am a Somali American professor in the era of surveillance and drone strikes perpetuated through the War on Terror.

Universities love a flagship building that sets them apart from the rest. But are they being designed with learning and research in mind?

Cornell Grad Students Form Unrecognized Union.

* The Irony of Catholic Colleges.

* The end of content.

* The end of tenure.

* Fake traffic is rotting the Internet.

* So weird: John Boehner, House Speaker, Will Resign From Congress.

* The College President-to-Adjunct Pay Ratio.

* The Journal of Academic Freedom has a special section devoted to Steven Salaita.

* Science proves you like being ripped off by airlines.

Fordham, Marquette rescind honorary degrees they gave Cosby.

Here’s More Evidence That Galactic Super-Civilizations Don’t Exist. Yet!

What a massive sexual assault survey found at 27 top U.S. universities. Counterpoint: The latest big sexual assault survey is (like others) more hype than science. Counter-counterpoint: The University of Chicago’s message to the Class of 2019: Don’t be a rapist.

* Speech and the campus newspaper at Wesleyan. And from the Southern Poverty Law Center: Campus Newspaper Thefts since 2000.

* Today in the apocalypse: Why some scientists are worried about a surprisingly cold ‘blob’ in the North Atlantic Ocean.

* Ahmed’s Clock, Banneker’s Clock, and the Racial Surveillance of Invention in America.

* “Declining Student Resilience: A Serious Problem for Colleges.”

A recent study suggests that acetaminophen—found in Tylenol, Excedrin and a host of other medications—is an all-purpose damper, stifling a range of strong feelings. Throbbing pain, the sting of rejection, paralyzing indecision—along with euphoria and delight—all appear to be taken down a notch by the drug.

Volkswagen and the Era of Cheating Software. Volkswagen hires BP’s Deepwater defense team as the lawsuits start. But it’s not all bad news.

Stojcevski was sent to the Macomb County Jail in Mt. Clemens, Mich., on June 11, 2014, to serve a 30-day sentence after failing to appear in court over a ticket for careless driving, according to the lawsuit. During the 16 days between his imprisonment and his death, the lawsuit alleges, staff at the jail knowingly allowed him to suffer through “excruciating” acute withdrawal without treatment.

Inside the collapse of Scott Walker’s presidential bid.

* Inside Retraction Watch.

* Inside Salvador Dali’s Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland.

Rather than fighting for more and better work, we should fight for more time to use as we please. Proposals like a universal basic income may well lead to this. Most importantly, in thinking about the time bind, we should keep in mind what it would mean to be really free from it. We should keep in mind the full possibilities of liberation: what we want is not to be allowed to work more or in better conditions, but to be allowed to live as we see fit.

* Counterpoint: Against UBI.

* I had nightmares like this: What If the Answer Isn’t College, but Longer High School?

* A Urine Collection Bag from Apollo 11 marked with the initials “NA.”

* The Bowe Bergdahl case is a weird choice for Serial season two, but I suppose nearly anything would be.

Netflix Data Reveals Exactly When TV Shows Hook Viewers — And It’s Not the Pilot.

* DC reboots the Spectre.

* Happy Birthday, everyone.

* …the digital apocalypse never arrived, or at least not on schedule. While analysts once predicted that e-books would overtake print by 2015, digital sales have instead slowed sharply.

* Honestly this would work pretty well for academics too.

* Listen, this is just getting silly now.

We have burned all the furniture for fuel and we’re starting to chop away at the deck. We are a terrible, dispirited society and we finally have the terrible, dispirited Muppets we deserve.

What Can ‘Star Trek’ Teach Us About American Exceptionalism?

* Rude hand gestures from around the world.

* And I’m devoting the rest of my career to the Mysteries of the Unknown books, now that I’ve been reminded they exist.

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Written by gerrycanavan

September 26, 2015 at 9:00 am

An Especially Worthy Entry in Our Ongoing Series of Wednesday Links

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‘Well, Here’s What Won’t Pass,’ Obama Says Before Listing 35 Proposals.

* Aaron Bady’s amazing “African Writers in a New World” interview series at Post 45 continues with Teju Cole.

Daniel Maguire on the McAdams Case at Marquette. Really hard to believe they’ve somehow managed to create a situation where McAdams has the better side of the argument.

* Ashon Crawley on Ferguson and utopia.

* Cruel optimism and the NFL (or, Life in the Factory of Sadness).

* Meanwhile: Patriots Black Ops Division Kills Opposing Team Leaders In Three States; “All in the Game,” Says Belichick.

* The NCAA, Last Seen Claiming It Has No Jurisdiction Over Decades-Long Academic Fraud at UNC, Says It’s Investigating Academic Fraud at 20 Colleges.

* …or live long enough to become the villain: The Vagina Monologues is now reactionary.

Read the letter the FBI sent MLK to try to convince him to kill himself. Martin Luther King Jr.’s Stint as an Advice Columnist for Ebony Magazine. Happy Robert E. Lee Day! …anytime the same state and culture invites you to worship a human being they tried to kill, we should be suspicious of the ways they want us to remember.

* I think I rediscover this fact with the same surprise every couple of years: In 1991, a Boston University investigatory committee concluded that King had indeed plagiarized parts of his dissertation, but found that it was “impractical to reach, on the available evidence, any conclusions about Dr. King’s reasons for failing to attribute some, but not all, of his sources.” That is, it could have been anything from malicious intent to simple forgetfulness—no one can determine for sure today. They did not recommend a posthumous revocation of his degree, but instead suggested that a letter be attached to the dissertation in the university library noting the passages lacked quotations and citations.

* Neoliberalism and the Degradation of Education (Alternative Routes, Vol. 26). A ton of good links here.

* Teach or perish. Teach and perish.

80 rich people now have as much as 50% of the rest of humanity combined. Let’s meet our overlords!

Science Fiction Under Totalitarian Regimes, Part 2: Tsarist and Soviet Russia. Here was Part 1: Germany.

* Coming soon: Keywords for Radicals.

* On the failure to reclaim the word “slut.”

When the trains stopped coming down the track, Tryon, NC began to crumble, and since then something disappears each day.

Groundbreaking Artwork Reimagines Disney Princesses As Office Supplies.

‘Cultural Marxism’: a uniting theory for rightwingers who love to play the victim. This is a term you see in the comment threads no one is supposed to be reading more and more.

‘Overworked’ drone pilots are baling out. Chomsky: Obama’s Drone Program ‘The Most Extreme Terrorist Campaign of Modern Times.’

Lonesome Alito Declares Marriage Only Between A Man And The Sea.

* True crime watch: Milwaukee man says stabbing sister, father was ‘right thing to do.’ Spoiler alert: no.

* I want to believe! Russia Orders Obama: Tell World About Aliens, Or We Will.

* It’s already working! U.S. Air Force Releases Thousands of Pages Of Declassified UFO Files.

10 Rules For Making Better Fantasy Maps.

Trustees Refuse to Reconsider Salaita’s Firing: “That Decision Is Final.”

* Scenes from the class struggle at the University of California.

* How Did We Get Here? The AAUP’s evolving emphasis on collective bargaining.

The twilight of a particular organizational form should not be confused with the end of worker organization itself. Institutions are not permanent, but workers’ interest in organization is. And besides, the current model is disappearing whether we like it or not.

Can you name these cities just by looking at their subway maps?

* Broken clock watch: Cuomo wants a train to La Guardia.

* Star Wars considering casting Tatiana Maslany for every role, one assumes.

* Pay Attention, 007! On the Usability of James Bond’s Gadgets.

Majestic Animals That Could Go Extinct This Century.

* A lifetime of being paranoid about this confirmed.

* The trouble with Harley Quinn. Via io9.

* Sid Meier’s next: Starships.

* And doctors, who have already taken everything from us, want our pizza too. The line must be drawn here!

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Written by gerrycanavan

January 21, 2015 at 7:52 am

Wednesday!

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wglix3anizobjgyyidd1A bounce house flew away with three children inside. Unreal.

* Also unreal: Homeless Football Player Can’t Receive Fans’ Aid Due To Criminal Cartel’s Insane, Abusive Rules. Here are the salaries the administrative staff of Boise State athletics will be making while their unpaid employee is homeless.

* Think of the NCAA as a cheering squad, that gets all up into your personal life. Former Oklahoma center Gabe Ikard is a courtside fixture at Thunder games with his girlfriend. He stated in a radio interview with WWLS’ the Morning Animals that Oklahoma’s Compliance Dept. made his girlfriend sign an affidavit their relationship was legitimate and was not a ruse to provide extra benefits to an Oklahoma football player. Ikard was one of the players embroiled in “Pastagate,” where Oklahoma self-reported a secondary violation and ordered him to pay $3.83 to charity for excessive pasta consumption.

* I didn’t realize until I spoke to Rebecca Schuman about her Amherst-banning-frats piece how misguided it was. Without explicit exceptions for emergencies and assault-reporting this kind of blanket ban is obviously unworkable, and almost certainly not Title IX compliant.

 Hey, fellow educators! It’s your cousin, Gerry. You know that consolation you’ve been taking that at least your life’s work is meaningful? Well, listen to this!

* Vigilante feminism at Columbia.

* The Washington Post assigns five reporters to chase down a lie Karl Rove just made up on the spot.

Sandy Hook ‘Truther’ Tells Victim’s Mother Her Daughter Never Existed.

Arguing that school closures in cities across the country disproportionately affect African American students, community activists filed three federal civil rights complaints Tuesday challenging closures in Newark, New Orleans and Chicago and called on the Obama administration to halt similar efforts elsewhere.

Boosting school funding 20 percent erased the graduation gap between rich and poor students.

Cell Phone Video Shows Police Choking, Kicking 6th Graders.

* Fox greenlights “last man on Earth” premise it must know will get canceled immediately. They must know.

* io9: The Strange, Post-Soviet Architecture of Astana, Kazakhstan.

* Game of Mushrooms.

“I understand that I will be made to suffer for my actions, and that the return of this information to the public marks my end. I will be satisfied if the federation of secret law, unequal pardon, and irresistible executive powers that rule the world that I love are revealed for even an instant. If you seek to help, join the open source community and fight to keep the spirit of the press alive and the internet free. I have been to the darkest corners of government, and what they fear is light.

“You mention in your book that Snowden’s moral universe was first informed by video games.”

* Today in academic journals: Board Game Studies.

* Spurious Correlations. The truth is out there!

* Back to the top of the order: How artificial intelligence is about to disrupt higher education.

* And the Pope gets deep into my wheelhouse, says the Church would baptize aliens.

Speaking during the homily at his daily morning Mass at the Casa Santa Marta inside Vatican City where he lives on Monday, he told his mostly clerical audience that they should keep an open mind to anyone—or anything—seeking God. “If—for example—tomorrow an expedition of Martians came, and some of them came to us, here… Martians, right? Green, with that long nose and big ears, just like children paint them… And one says, ‘But I want to be baptized!’ What would happen?” he asked parishioners. “When the Lord shows us the way, who are we to say, ‘No, Lord, it is not prudent! No, let’s do it this way…’”

UFOs in Jersey

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Written by gerrycanavan

May 14, 2010 at 10:50 pm

Whitey on the Moon

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Alongside the nationalist mythmaking and the hypermasculine preoccupation with “bigness” you’d expect to find at a place like the Kennedy Space Center there’s a fin de siècle affect of nostalgia for empire nearly everywhere you turn. Never really sure how to celebrate its post-Apollo failures in the first place, the KSC staff appears to have been completely demoralized by the retiring of the Space Shuttle and the Obama administration’s recent decision to cancel the Ares project, with nearly every employee we heard speak during our tour giving voice to their dejection in one way or another.

As I’ve mentioned several times before, I find I’m totally conflicted on the value of manned space exploration. On the one hand I think the myth of space colonization is both hugely wasteful and politically pernicious; I don’t think the species is ever leaving Earth in significant numbers and as a consequence there are almost certainly better ways to spend our money than pretending that we might.

On the other hand I have to admit I was moved to tears during the Center’s long program detailing Neil Armstrong’s first steps on the Moon and the attendant global celebration, which remains such a singular human achievement that I’d pay almost any price to live to see it someday replicated by an international mission to Mars. Intellectually I am able to look critically at the military-industrial-academic underpinings of the NASA missions and recognize the state interests and imperial ideologies at work in them, but emotionally it’s as if loving this stuff is coded in my DNA. I just can’t help it. I think manned space exploration is almost certainly pointless but I deeply, deeply hope I turn out to be wrong.