Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth

Posts Tagged ‘novels

Another Loose Firehose of Weekend Links!

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* I’ve been so busy this little bit of clickbait isn’t even timely anymore: 3 reasons the American Revolution was a mistake. And this one isn’t timely either!

* New China Miéville story, in Salvage.

A Laboratory Sitting on a Graveyard: Greece and the Neoliberal Debt Crisis.

Campus cops are shadowy, militarized and more powerful than ever.

* How to Support a Scholar Who Has Come Under Attack.

Guns, Prisons, Social Causes: New Fronts Emerge in Campus Fights Over Divestment.

* The final budget numbers that University of Wisconsin campuses have been dreading for months were released late Monday, prompting a mad scramble on campuses to figure out the winners and losers. Wisconsin’s Neoliberal Arts.

* In other words, states would be required to embrace and the federal government would be obligated to enforce a professor-centered vision of how to operate a university: tenure for everyone, nice offices all around, and the administrators and coaches can go pound sand. Sanders for president!

* Why College Kids Are Avoiding the Study of Literature.

* Rich Kids Study English.

* 11 Reasons To Ignore The Haters And Major In The Humanities. “Quality of life” almost barely sneaks in as a criterion at the end.

* Towards a New Common Sense.

* On Fraction and Aja’s Hawkeye.

* Deep cuts: Why Do TV Characters All Own the Same Weird Old Blanket?

* The plan creates, in effect, a parallel school district within Milwaukee that will be empowered to seize MPS schools and turn them over to charter operators or voucher-taking private schools. While there is, in principle, a mechanism for returning OSPP schools to MPS after a period of five years, that mechanism carries qualifications intended to ensure that no OSPP school will ever return to MPS. This, alongside funding provisions for OSPP and MPS spelled out in the motion, makes it hard to avoid the conclusion that the plan’s purpose is to bankrupt the Milwaukee Public Schools. It is a measure of Darling and Kooyenga’s contempt for the city and its people that they may sincerely believe that this would be a good thing for Milwaukee schoolchildren.

The failure rate for charter schools is much higher than for traditional public schools. In the 2011-2012 school year, for example, charter school students ran two and half times the risk of having their education disrupted by a school closing and suffering academic setbacks as a result. Dislocated students are less likely to graduate and suffer other harms. In a 2014 study, Matthew F. Larsen with the Department of Economics at Tulane University looked at high school closures in Milwaukee, almost all of which were charter schools. He concluded that closures decreased “high school graduation rates by nearly 10%” The effects persist “even if the students attends a better quality school after closure.”

The Verdict on Charter Schools?

* “Here is what I would like for you to know: In America, it is traditional to destroy the black body—it is heritage.” Letter to My Son.

What If Everything You Knew About Disciplining Kids Was Wrong?

On June 8, CNN unveiled “Courageous,” a new production unit and an in-house studio that would be paid by advertisers to produce and broadcast news-like “branded content.” 

* Social networking and the majority illusion.

* Reddit in chaos.

* “Colleges’ Balance Sheets Are Looking Better.” Happy days are here again!

* Is Bail Unconstitutional?

* My Severed Thumb and the Ambiguities of Technological Progress.

* So much for “most unpaid internships are illegal.”

* Now that the Supreme Court has once again saved Obamacare, can we have an honest talk about it?

* From the archives! Liberalism and Gentrification.

* From the archives! The world’s oldest continuously operating family business ended its impressive run last year. Japanese temple builder Kongo Gumi, in operation under the founders’ descendants since 578, succumbed to excess debt and an unfavorable business climate in 2006.

* Dear Alice Sheldon.

* “Zach Anderson” is the latest outrageous story from the sex offender registry to go viral.

* Prisoner’s Dilemma as pedagogy.

In its 2015-17 budget, the Legislature cut four-year college tuition costs by 15 to 20 percent by 2016 — making Washington the only state in the country to lower tuition for public universities and colleges next year.

* Shadow work and academia.

* Art and the wage.

* The end of “weaponized anthropology.”

Keywords for the Age of Austerity 20: Pivot.

* Tumblr of the week: Every Single Word Spoken by a Person of Color in [Mainstream Film Title].

* New Jersey congressman pitches the least substantive response to the student debt crisis — SO FAR.

Neither special circumstances nor grades were determinative. Of the 841 students admitted under these criteria, 47 had worse grades than Fisher, and 42 of them were white. On the other end, UT rejected 168 black and Latino students with scores equal to or better than Fisher’s.

Thousands Of Children Risked Their Lives In Tanzania’s Gold Mines For $2 A Day.

* Kotsko has been blogging about his latest turn through the harassment grinder. He’s taking on Big Santa, too. He just doesn’t care.

* Climate science and gloom. But at least air conditioning might not be that bad.

* Weird day for computers this week. Anyway we should put algorithms in charge of everything.

* Scenes from the Olympic scam, Boston edition.

20091207* At least it’s an ethos!

* Sci-Fi Crime Drama with a Strong Black Lead.

* Salaita, one year later.

The world of fracketeering is infinitely flexible and contradictory. Buy tickets online and you could be charged an admin fee for an attachment that requires you to print them at home. The original online booking fee – you’ve come this far in the buying process, hand over an extra 12 quid now or write off the previous 20 minutes of your life – has mutated into exotic versions of itself. The confirmation fee. The convenience fee. Someone who bought tickets for a tennis event at the O2 sent me this pithy tweet: “4 tickets. 4 Facility Fees + 4 Service Charge + 1 Standard Mail £2.75 = 15% of overall £!”. Definitely a grand slam.

* The initial, back-of-the-napkin notes for Back to the Future 2 and 3.

* Nice try, parents! You can’t win.

* What my parents did was buy us time – time for us to stare at clouds, time for us to contemplate the stars, to wonder at a goiter, to gape open-mouthed at shimmering curtains of charged particles hitting the ionosphere. What it cost them can be written about another time. What I am grateful for is that summer of awe.

The “gag law also forbids citizens to insult the monarchy and if someone is found guilty in a defamation or libel case, he or she can face up to two years in prison or be forced to pay an undetermined fine,” local media outlet Eco Republicano reported as the public expressed its anger against the law introduced by the ruling Popular Party.

* Wisconsin Democrats sue to undo the incredible 2011 gerrymander that destroyed the state.

* Obama Plans Broader Use of Clemency to Free Nonviolent Drug Offenders. This is good, but still much too timid — he could free many times as many people as he’s freeing and still barely make a dent in the madness of the drug war.

* EPA’s New Fracking Study: A Close Look at the Numbers Buried in the Fine Print.

* The central ideological commitment of the new Star Wars movies seems to be “well of course you can’t really overthrow an Empire.” Seems right. (Minor spoilers if you’re an absolute purist.)

* Brian K. Vaughn will write an issue of The Walking Dead.

* Dune, 50 years on: how a science fiction novel changed the world.

* When adjuncts go union.

* So you want to announce for the WWE.

* When I Was White.

* This isn’t canon! Marisa Tomei is your Aunt May.

* I’m not happy about this either.

* A Quick Puzzle to Test Your Problem Solving, or, Our Brains Don’t Work. I got it right, though I doubt I would have if it hadn’t been framed as a puzzle.

* Your time travel short of the weekend: “One-Minute Time Machine.”

* Or perhaps post-apocalyptic Sweden is more your flavor.

* Another round of the polygamy debate.

* RISK: Game of Thrones.

Everything You Thought You Knew About Nic Cage’s Superman Film Is Wrong.

* Remnant of Boston’s Brutal Winter Threatens to Outlast Summer.

* And then there’s Whitesboro.

The Lost Girls: One famous band. One huge secret. Many lives destroyed.

Armed police in England and Wales only fired their weapons twice over the course of 14,864 operations that took place from 2013-2014.

Cellphones Do Not Give You Brain Cancer.

* 7,000 Fireworks Go Off at Once Due To Computer Malfunction.

* Sopranos season eight: How two technology consultants helped drug traffickers hack the Port of Antwerp.

I never noticed how sexist so many children’s books are until I started reading to my kids. Preach.

* A gendered history of LEGO.

* Aurora is out! Buy it! You don’t have to take my word for it! Excerpt! More! More!

* And there’s nothing sweet in life.

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Written by gerrycanavan

July 10, 2015 at 8:02 am

Posted in Look at what I found on the Internet

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Super Ultra Mega Monday Links

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* That is what America does. It is not broken. That is exactly what is wrong with it. The American Justice System Is Not Broken.

Why Should Anyone “Respect” the Law?

Autopsy: Milwaukee cop shot mentally-ill black man from above and behind, 14 times. Wave of Protests After Grand Jury Doesn’t Indict Officer in Eric Garner Chokehold Case. But they did manage to indict the man who filmed the murder. Worse Than Eric Garner: Cops Who Got Away With Killing Autistic Men and Little Girls. Prosecutors throwing grand jury inquiries to save killer cops. NYPD Abuse Increases Settlements Costing City $735 Million. Rookie NYPD cop who shot unarmed black man texted union reps before radioing for help. The cop who murdered Tamir Rice should never have been a cop. Grand Jury Clears Two Former Jasper Cops Who Beat Woman in Jail. Seattle Cop Who Punched a Handcuffed Woman in the Face Won’t Be Charged. Coastal Carolina students detained after writing unapproved chalk messages about Ferguson on campus sidewalks. Cop Fired for Beating a Non-violent, Handcuffed Man On Video, Gets Job Back AND Back Pay. Inside the Twisted Police Department That Kills Unarmed Citizens at the Highest Rate in the Country. The Deadly Self-Pity of the Police. Police Reforms You Should Always Oppose. Being a cop showed me just how racist and violent the police are. Where Are All the Good Cops? Ferguson Police investigating whether Michael Brown’s stepfather intended to incite a riot. If It Happened There: Courts Sanction Killings by U.S. Security Forces. The real scandal of police violence is what’s legal.

* But body cameras that the cops can freely turn on and off and whose footage they completely control will definitely solve it. You don’t have to take my word for it.

* Hey! My tuition bought you that shotgun. More links under the photo.

"Demonstrations Over Recent Grand Jury Decisions In Police-Involved Deaths Continue"

Stories of unseen lives and the effects homelessness in Milwaukee.

* Racial inequality is objectively worse than 30 years ago. And another deBoer instant classic: Tell Stephen Glass I said hey and shut out the lights on your way out.

On Being a Black Male, Six Feet Four Inches Tall, in America in 2014. Chris Rock vs. the industry.

Marquette University response to Westboro Baptist Church protest.

Rolling Stone just wrecked an incredible year of progress for rape victims. What happened at Rolling Stone was not Jackie’s fault. Blame Rolling Stone. The lesson of Rolling Stone and UVA: protecting victims means checking their stories. Reporters are not your friends.

* And just when I was thinking The Newsroom had actually gotten pretty good: Emily Nussbaum on The Newsroom‘s Crazy-Making Campus-Rape Episode. The AC Club: D-.

* Something I’d somehow missed when it was new, but came across in research for a new piece on zombies I’m working on: Margaret Atwood and Naomi Alderman’s The Happy Zombie Sunrise Home.

* Science fiction after Ferguson: An interview with Walidah Imarisha.

* SF as R&D for the very powerful: U.S. spy agency predicts a very transhuman future by 2030.

* Imagining an open source Star Wars.

On the lack of cultural estrangement in SF.

* Scenes from the class struggle at Oregon: Admin threatens to deport striking international grad students, just straight-up make-up grades. U Oregon and the Academic Labor System. Megapost at MetaFilter.

* Meanwhile, at Columbia.

* The Democrats’ Education Plan: Class War. Resegregation.

Cal Refuses to Pay Berkeley Minimum Wage.

Colleges that pledged to help poor families have been doing the opposite, new figures show.

* An update on the Salaita case from Corey Robin.

* “If students have time to get drunk, colleges aren’t doing their job.” MetaFilter links to the full series at CHE.

The Equipment 117 Colleges Have Acquired From the Dept. of Defense.

What I’ve Learned from Two Years Collecting Data on Police Killings.

* The latest New Inquiry on illness is another stellar issue from a publication that always delivers. This piece on love and schizophrenia is the one making the rounds currently.

Kerry Puts Brakes on CIA Torture Report. John Kerry’s sad legacy.

It Takes Nearly $100,000 a Year in Earnings Just to Buy a Crappy House in L.A.

* “Suicide Is My Retirement Plan.”

Why Poor People Stay Poor.

* Milwaukee after the recession: the jobs are going to the suburbs.

* Social justice as a means to social capital.

12 Female Characters Who Keep Shaving Despite Constant Peril.

* The music industry is a horror show, like everything else.

* Remembering Bhopal, the worst industrial disaster in the history of the world.

* We nearly saved the world, but we couldn’t give up our precious academic annual meetings.

California drought the worst in 1,200 years, new study says. Won’t someone cancel the MLA before it kills again!

* This doesn’t look so bad.

First ever British sci-fi feature film released. Congratulations, England! Looking forward to your next one.

40 Years Ago, Earth Beamed Its First Postcard to the Stars.

* Court Hears Second Case for a Chimpanzee’s Legal Rights.

* Sony has apparently gone to war with North Korea. The future is weird, y’all.

Someone Made A Map Of Every Rude Place Name In The UK.

* Shimer College: The Best Worst College in America.

* I mock the idea of “the law” around here a lot, but I never for the life of me imagined a scenario where the emergence of a video that shows a man accused of murdering his stepdaughter defiling her corpse could be bad news for the prosecution.

* Breaking news: the rich are different.

* So, for some reason, are the left-handed.

* But it’s not all bad news: The Case for Drinking as Much Coffee as You Like.

“It is no longer true that the divorce rate is rising, or that half of all marriages end in divorce. It has not been for some time.”

The British Government Wants To Build A Tunnel Under Stonehenge.

* If I’m being perfectly honest I got bored watching the three-minute “What if The Hobbit was one movie?” trailer.

* Scholars, start your syllabi: New novel from Toni Morrison coming in April.

* Wes Anderson’s The Force Awakens. If only!

And about 100 brains are missing from University of Texas. I’m late posting this, alas; all the easy jokes have already been taken…

20141207

Written by gerrycanavan

December 8, 2014 at 8:30 am

Posted in Look at what I found on the Internet

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Sunday Afternoon

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* ICYMI: Dr. Seuss Explains Assessment, Metrics, Administrative Blight, and Pretty Much Every Aspect of the Contemporary Education System.

* This is, I think, literally the first time I have ever heard of university budget cuts impacting administration. Meanwhile.

* Meanwhile meanwhile, Congress talks adjuncts and adjunctification. I’m sure they’ll come up with a good solution soon.

Tressie McMillan Cottom on race and adjunctification.

* Yo novel so staid and conventional, it’s taught at over 50 MFA programs.

* Submitted for your approval: An OCR of the MLA JIL list, 1965-2012.

* For some reason I’m seeing a ton of links to Bousquet’s “Tenured Bosses and Disposable Teachers” this weekend.

*  Bérubé’s last post on MLA 2014.

Harvard, MIT Online Courses Dropped by 95% of Registrants.

Inside a for-profit college nightmare.

* Inside the “longform backlash.”

How Student Activists at Duke Transformed a $6 Billion Endowment.

* “Income inequality” has proved a very successful framing for Democrats discussing a massive social problem, so of course the Obama White House is rolling out a much worse one.

* Pope Francis Is Drafting An Encyclical On The Environment.

cold* xkcd explains climate.

* Demographics is destiny: Latinos overwhelmingly want action on climate change.

* How nonviolent was the civil rights movement?

It’s 1968, and Esquire is interviewing James Baldwin.

* Chris Christie says no to dashboard cameras.

* The coming Common Core meltdown.

* The headline reads, “Chinese restaurant owner told to pull down two gigantic 50ft naked Buddhas from establishment’s roof.”

Highly Educated, Highly Indebted: The Lives of Today’s 27-Year-Olds, In Charts.

* America’s nuclear corps are a mess. Dr. Strangelove was a documentary.

A journey to the end of the world (of Minecraft).

* Science has finally proved that sex reverses cognitive decline in rats.

This World Map Shows The Enormity Of America’s Prison Problem.

* The New York Times has the tragic story of a man with a million dollars in his retirement account struggling to scrape by on just $31,500 a month. Truly, there but for the grace of God go we.

Bucking trend, Wisconsin union membership grows.

* Fox to strand reality show contestants on an island for an entire year.

Woody Guthrie’s daughter wants to preserve Greystone Park Psychiatric Hospital.

* The “okay, fine, let’s abolish all marriages” response to marriage equality is so strange to me. I know things like this happened during the civil rights movement — and one might argue that precisely the same thing has been happening in slow-motion to public education over the last few decades — but it still seems like such a strange, uniquely twenty-first-century temper tantrum.

* Behold, the 90s! The Most Impressive Costumes from Star Trek: TNG’s First 3 Seasons.

Life as a Nonviolent Psychopath.

We Didn’t Eat the Marshmallow. The Marshmallow Ate Us.

* And Stephen Hawking wants to destroy all your silly, silly dreams.

Midweek Links

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A collection of artists and activists advocating the neoliberalisation of children’s minds. That is scandalous and stupid. The text is open. This should – could – be our chance to remember that it was never just us who made it, and it was never just ours. China Miéville on the future of the novel.

* 53 Arrested Development Jokes You Probably Missed.

‘The Office’ Ends As Documentary Crew Gets All The Footage It Needs.

In retrospect, we really over-shot this thing by an enormous margin,” said Sheffield, adding that he likely had more than enough good material after filming a British workplace from 2001 to 2003.

* Romney didn’t get a Ryan bounce anywhere but in my beloved Wisconsin. Well, hell.

More great moments in polling: Obama apparently leads Romney among African-American voters 94% to 0%. Some room for improvement there.

* Nobody say “war crime”: Glenn Greenwald says U.S. drones are now attacking first responders.

* “Well, I think the fact that you’re actually innocent is a ‘technicality’! So there!” A 1995 U.S. Supreme Court decision said that prisoners found to be “actually innocent” should be released even if they had not followed all legal technical requirements. The next year, Congress passed a new law with stringent time limits on when inmates could file habeas corpus cases in federal court. But the nation’s highest court has never ruled on whether those deadlines apply in cases in which there is evidence of “actual innocence.” Appellate courts across the nation disagree on whether they do. The law, in its majestic equality…

* Answering leninology from the other day: here’s Gawker’s primer on the case against Julian Assange.

Bonobo genius makes stone tools like early humans did. Monkeys reject unequal pay. I’m sold. It’s their turn.

Gerry-Built Monday Links

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Although their etymologies are obscure and their meanings overlap, these are two distinct expressions. Something poorly built is “jerry-built.” Something rigged up temporarily in a makeshift manner with materials at hand, often in an ingenious manner, is “jury-rigged.” “Jerry-built” always has a negative connotation, whereas one can be impressed by the cleverness of a jury-rigged solution. Many people cross-pollinate these two expressions and mistakenly say “jerry-rigged” or “jury-built.” It’s hard not to take this personally.

* Plaintiffs Challenging Affordable Care Act In The Supreme Court Admit That The Law Is Constitutional.

In Why Some Politicians Are More Dangerous than Others, Gilligan documents a striking statistical connection between changing rates of violent death in the United States over the past century and the party of the president. He concludes that Republican administrations are “risk factors for lethal violence,” and that the only reason they have not produced “disastrously high epidemic levels” of suicides and homicides is that Democrats have repeatedly undone their damage.

* Gingrich, true to form, takes right-wing attacks on the very idea of journalism itself all the way to the next level.

* Grover Norquist promises impeachment if Obama doesn’t extend the Bush tax cuts.

* Political religion: May you find the Ronald Reagan living inside each and everyone of you.

* The Muppets vs. Fox News.

* I think I’ve linked this one before, but it’s a classic: Jourdan Anderson’s 1865 letter “To My Old Master.”

A couple of years ago, Amanda Hocking needed to raise a few hundred dollars so, in desperation, made her unpublished novel available on the Kindle. She has since sold over 1.5m books and, in the process, changed publishing forever.

* Say goodbye to Captain Marvel.

* And today in fandom: #BelieveInSherlock. Big spoilers for the end of the second season, if you’re not current yet.

Quick Hits

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* “Proposed new calendar would make time rational.”

According to Richard Conn Henry’s calendar, eight months would each have 30 days. Every third month would have 31 days. Every so often, to account for the leftover time, a whole extra week would be added.

The upshot: Years would proceed with clockwork regularity, with no annual re-jiggering of schedules required. Each day would occupy the same position as it had the previous year and would in the next. Were this 364-day calendar, known officially as the Hanke-Henry Permanent Calendar, adopted on the first day of 2012, both Christmas and New Year’s Day would forever fall on Sunday.

If the bonus week can be a work-free jubilee, I’m in.

* And then climate change ate all our peanuts.

* And then Rick Perry annexed Canada.

* The SSA said 50 percent of workers made less than $26,364 last year — and most Americans have fewer job opportunities available to them. But the wealthiest Americans are relatively unscathed, with those earning $1 million or more jumping 18 percent from 2009. More here.

* Charles Taylor asks, “Is there any other living novelist who calls for a perpetual re-evaluation as much as Stephen King?” I’m not exactly a fan (though there’s quite a bit I like), but he’s definitely someone I’d like to teach a class on at some point.

* Death of cinema watch: Bridesmaids is the only top fifteen film this year that is neither a sequel, a reboot, or an adaptation.

* Bad news everyone: Clean paper towels are filthy. Your only hope now is to finally build that cleanroom.

* Why you’re fat and will always be fat. Via MeFi.

* Robert Reich predicts Obama-Clinton 2012. The Clinton-Biden switch has seemed like the only possible option for ’12 since at least 2008; it’s a huge unforced error if they don’t.

* And TEDxBrussels predicts 2061. No word on if there will still be peanuts.

The Social Safety Net Is for Closers (and More Links from the Weekend)

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* Salman Rushdie is to make a sci-fi television series in the belief that quality TV drama has taken over from film and the novel as the best way of widely communicating ideas and stories. Are you listening, English department hiring committees? Look for my dossier this fall. (Thanks, Erica!)

For the first time in years, the United Mineworkers of America (UMWA), the largest union representing coal miners, has found common cause withenvironmental and community advocates who are seeking to end mountaintop-removal coal mining.

* Ten Charts That Prove the U.S. Is a Low-Tax Country.

* In a Pure Coincidence, Gaddafi Impeded U.S. Oil Interests before the War.

* Democratic Leaders Perfectly Coordinate Message on Anthony Weiner, Can’t Do It For Anything That Actually Matters. I happen to agree that Weiner should probably resign—if only to finally end the story—but why aren’t Democratic leaders sending synchronized press releases on jobs or Medicare?

* MetaFilter covers the weird, sad decline of David Mamet. We’ll always have Glengarry Glen Ross

* And the first bit of remotely interesting news from the D.C. relaunch: Grant Morrison will be writing Action Comics. Now that’s something I might actually read.