Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth

Posts Tagged ‘lottery

Wednesday Links!

leave a comment »

* In case you missed it, a Twitter conversation inspired a post with actual content on this blog yesterday: Meritocracy, Lottery, Game: Notes on the Academic Job Market. Of course, I wasn’t first:

* Elsewhere in the academic job market genre: Not Lottery/Not Meritocracy, What Is It? From 2013! The Top 5 Mistakes Women Make in Academic Settings. Twelve Steps to Being a “Good Enough” Professor.

* And elsewhere in my media empire:

The insightful tweet was this one:

One out of 63,000’s not bad!

* We were also riffing on Twitter yesterday about the possibility of TV shows about campus police, never stopping to realize that of course it’s all already happened years ago.

* Eight faculty members go on strike at the General Theological Seminary, which the administration says is tantamount to quitting. A big precedent could be set here if they get away with it.

* It will take nearly $34 million each year over a 20-year period to address deferred maintenance needs and capital improvements at four major Milwaukee cultural institutions and provide public financing for a new arena.

* Elon Musk explains how we’ll colonize Mars.

* A brief FAQ on Steven Salaita.

I have some other weird  idiosyncratic justification for why he was fired that avoids the plain reality that he was fired for holding controversial political views.

* A critique of the Gotham programme: Marxism and superheroes.

* Brain disease found in 76 of 79 NFL players examined in study.

* Muslim NFL player penalized for praying after touchdown.

* Pa. Official Admits Errors In Investigation Of Whether Fracking Waste Spoiled Drinking Water. “Errors” undersells what seems to be pretty deliberate omissions and lies.

* Here’s What Happened The One Time When The U.S. Had Universal Childcare.

* Decadence watch: “A ‘Tetris’ Movie Is in the Works.”

* Resource curse watch: This Month the U.S. Could Pass Saudi Arabia as the World’s Biggest Petroleum Producer.

* I think I already linked to this one, but why not: A long medium post on the moneyless, post-scarcity economics of Star Trek.

Netflix has reached a deal with The Weinstein Co. for its first original movie — a sequel to Ang Lee’s 2000 martial arts pic “Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon” — set to hit IMAX theaters and the streaming-video service simultaneously next summer. I am on board.

* And Community just can’t catch a break: now Yvette Nicole Brown is leaving, too.

Tuesday Morning!

leave a comment »

The most important finding is that family formation negatively affects women’s, but not men’s, academic careers. For men, having children is a career advantage; for women, it is a career killer. And women who do advance through the faculty ranks do so at a high price. They are far less likely to be married with children. We see more women in visible positions like presidents of Ivy League colleges, but we also see many more women who are married with children working in the growing base of part-time and adjunct faculty, the “second tier,” which is now the fastest growing sector of academia. Unfortunately, more women Ph.Ds. has meant more cheap labor. And this cheap labor threatens to displace the venerable tenure track system.

N.Y.U. Gives Its Stars Loans for Summer Homes.

The US government has finally released the names of 46 men being held in Guantánamo under the classification of “indefinite detainees” – terror suspects deemed too dangerous to release or move yet impossible to try in a civilian or even military court for reasons of inadequate or tainted evidence.

Bank of America whistle-blower’s bombshell: “We were told to lie.” Gasp!

* SCOTUSwatch: Win one, lose one.

The lasting effects of the Vietnam draft lottery.

Vulnerability to the draft induced by the 1969 lottery not only structured attitudes toward the Vietnam War, but also provoked a cascade of changes in basic partisan, ideological, and issue attitudes. The breadth, magnitude, and, in some respects, persistence of these attitudinal changes illustrates how powerful self-interest can become when public policies directly touch our lives.

It seems to suggest how fundamentally arbitrary political attitudes are, however much we think we’re thinking things through rationally and proceeding by careful analysis of the facts.

* Science proves the humanities aren’t worthless!

* I thought Evan’s writeup on Mad Men was really great this week. Almost makes this season’s excruciating focus on Don’s mother issues seem interesting.

* Jesus wept: Vice re-creates female authors’ suicides for maximum trolling. Don’t even bother clicking, it’s absolutely as dumb as advertised.

* And just how much damage did Superman and Zod do to Metropolis?

Six for Friday

with 5 comments

* The dark side of dual enrollment. There’s some interesting stuff here on how testing practices deform learning, too:

We talked a little bit about the class, her performance, and where she should go next. The student explained that my class is not compatible with her “learning method.” She said that she prefers “that multiplying method, you know, where there are letters, A, B, C.”

I said, “You mean, multiple choice?”

“Yes, that’s the one,” she said. “That’s the method where I learn best. I’m good at figuring out which letters aren’t the right ones.”

She said she was good at multiple choice because she has learned to eliminate wrong answers and get the choices down to one or two and then make a good guess. She has transferred into Sam Houston State University with 65 credit hours (two years!) of “college” classes, all earned at a nearby community college. With possibly one exception (part of a math class), all her community-college classes used multiple choice. She said she didn’t learn well with my “method.”

This student spent 15 years of standardized tests learning how to discriminate between pre-presented choices — an utterly useless skill.

* Ideology vs. how random number generators work.

Hollywood misogyny is somehow getting worse.

* Via Facebook: Genocide in South Dakota?

* Perry Anderson in New Left Review with a nice history of the two-party system in America.

* And Business Week has a capitalism-with-a-human-face profile of CostCo.

Sunday, Sunday

leave a comment »

CPBB_Per_Student_Spending_Cuts(some links via Aaron’s Sunday Reading, which as always has so much more)

* The greatest nation in the world: A few nights a year, Tennessee holds a health care lottery of sorts, giving the medically desperate a chance to get help.

* A Truly Devastating Graph on State Higher Education Spending.

* In sentencing the boys to a minimum of one year in juvenile jail, Judge Thomas Lipps doled out some advice to their peers on how to avoid the same fate. He urged them “to have discussions about how you talk to your friends; how you record things on the social media so prevalent today; and how you conduct yourself when drinking is put upon you by your friends.” Tweeting wasn’t exactly the problem in Steubenville, though, now was it.

* Stunning narrative of decades-long abuse (of all kinds) in a New York City high school. The level of administrative incompetence (shading into malice) is just one of the shocking parts of this story; I finally watched Bully last night and couldn’t believe this was how school administrators would act in general, much less when they knew they were being filmed.

* March Madness as class struggle.

* Do Corporations Enjoy a 2nd Amendment Right to Drones?

* So what exactly was in all those old fallout shelters?

* The Iraq war is notable not only for journalistic weakness, but for journalistic futility: the futility of fact itself. Fact could not match the fabrications of power. Eventually, our reality shifted to become what they conceived. “I could have set myself on fire in protest on the White House lawn and the war would have proceeded without me,” wrote Bush speechwriter David Frum. That was the message of the Iraq war: There is no point in speaking truth to power when power is the only truth.

* Rand Paul Is Right On Marijuana, And That Should Scare Democrats Into Action.

* University of Wisconsin professor warns of dangers of reintroducing extinct animals. Spoilsport!

* The world’s first LEGO museum is coming.

* And all about the next board game I’d like to learn to play, Twilight Struggle.

Why Hasn’t Somebody Made Sunday Reading an Internet Tradition?

leave a comment »

Less than 24 hours after last night’s Powerball drawing, reports confirmed that the two winners of the $587 million jackpot are both already divorced from their respective spouses, alienated from their friends and families, and completely bankrupt.

* Calvin and Hobbes search engine. Get it before it’s DCMA’d!

* Vandana Singh interviews Ted Chiang.

Finally, can you tell us something about what you’re working on now?

I don’t want to talk too much about what I’m working on, so I’ll just say that it’s a story about memory and the written word.

Sold!

* Kurt Vonnegut’s term paper prompt.

As for your term papers, I should like them to be both cynical and religious. I want you to adore the Universe, to be easily delighted, but to be prompt as well with impatience with those artists who offend your own deep notions of what the Universe is or should be. “This above all …”

* Another round of analysis from Yves Smith on the Rolling Jubilee tax issue.

If Rolling Jubilee’s tax position is incorrect, the consequences would be ugly. In many cases, the people it claimed it was helping would be worse off than if it had done nothing.

The forgiven debt would be treated as taxable income. If the individual is a non-taxpayer (as in has too little income) the debt forgiveness could push them into owning taxes, and for anyone who was a taxpayer in the year the debt was forgiven, would result in additional taxes owed.

The worst of this is that in many cases, the debt forgiven by OWS would be invalid debt: past the statute of limitations, discharged in bankruptcy, disputed, paid off but for some reason not removed from a bank’s systems. In these cases, if Rolling Jubilee’s tax view turns out to be incorrect, the borrower will be considerably worse off, since he could have disputed the invalid debt (and debt collectors tend to roll easily) but will now have to disprove the validity of the debt to the IRS. The result is that this shifts the burden of proof: in debt collection matters, the burden of proof is on the plaintiff, the debt collector, to demonstrate the validity of the debt and the amount owed. In disputes with the IRS, the burden of proof is with the taxpayer.

In addition, even if Strike Debt is correct in its gift argument, it would in some cases owe gift taxes. It does not appear prepared for this eventuality. Nor would winning on the gift question save it from running afoul of the private benefit question. Even a gift to an individual is a private benefit. If it were to lose its 501 (c)(4) status, Rolling Jubilee would owe additional taxes and penalties.

Rejected jokes submitted to a kids’ jokes site.

* The Inside Story of Pong.

* The Video Games Women Make.

Thomas Jefferson: American Fascist? The third president was a creepy, brutal hypocrite. And the very worst thing you’ll read today:

Jefferson, Finkelman tells us, was not a “particularly kind” slave-master; he sometimes “punished slaves by selling them away from their families and friends, a retaliation that was incomprehensibly cruel even at the time.” And he  believed that  ”blacks’ ability to reason was ‘much inferior’ to whites’ and that they were “in imagination they are dull, tasteless, and anomalous.”  So what?  Really – so what?  If you want to think that he was a bad guy — or even a really bad guy, with truly grievous personal faults — you’re free to do so.  But to claim that that has something to do with Jefferson’s historical legacy is truly preposterous.

A growing if largely invisible community hard-hit by Sandy faces a unique challenge: Undocumented immigrants must get help to fix illegal apartments.

Chinua Achebe At 82.

The Sports Tax That Everyone Pays.

* People on the Internet are going to have to start self-diagnosing themselves with something else: Asperger’s Dropped As Separate Condition From DSM-V.

And the mint is considering eliminating $1 bills entirely. Yes, again!

Thursday Afternoon

leave a comment »

* The day would come when many West Virginians recalled the story of Jack’s Powerball Christmas with a shudder at the magnitude of ruination: families asunder, precious lambs six feet under, folks undone by the lure of all that easy money.

* The Great Maria Bamford has a new comedy special filmed in her living room where the only audience is her parents.

* Austerity everywhere: they’re going to start charging for the bus between Duke and UNC.

* Jokes I’ve stolen from elsewhere on the Internet: Let’s do a sequel to that beloved show starring a grown-up version of that Savage brother. #youfools #yousaidtheincantationwrong #monkeyspaw

* When scams collide! Grand Canyon University, a for-profit Christian college located in Phoenix, Ariz., now has a Division I athletics program. Inside Higher Ed reports that GCU will become a member of the Western Athletic Conference, as the first for-profit college to join a Division I NCAA conference.

* Apocalypse as wish-fulfillment.

* And an actual scandal alert! Susan Rice, Top Candidate For Secretary Of State, Has Millions Tied To Canadian Tar Sands.

A Tax on the Innumerate

leave a comment »

Powerball simulator. Mine’s been playing for 25 years and I’ve won $312, bringing my net loss to a clean $-4200. Via MeFi.

Written by gerrycanavan

August 13, 2012 at 9:52 am