Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth

Posts Tagged ‘omniscience

Monday Links: Occupy, Apocalypse, Omniscience, and More

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* The dark side of #Occupy: Tuberculosis reported at Occupy Atlanta. “Zuccotti Lung” reported at Occupy Wall Street. And getting a ton of play in conservative media (and not unjustifiably): more reports of rapes and sexual assaults at the camps.

* The bright side.

If the last decade was the era of occupations that everyone called liberations, then the 99 percent movement is seeking to make this the era of liberations everyone calls occupations. War Is a Force That Pays the 1 Percent: Occupying American Foreign Policy.

* Peter Paik: Why are apocalyptic narratives so popular?

The impartiality with which the poem gazes upon the victors and the vanquished strips away the illusion that one can ever master force and exempt oneself from the fate of becoming reduced to the horrifying and inert condition of a thing. But such dispassionate lucidity, which leads one to wonder whether the author of the poem is indeed a Trojan and not a Greek, is born from the experience of defeat, the trauma of becoming oneself conquered. Weil refers to Thucydides, who recounts that the Achaeans, eighty years after the sack of Troy, were themselves were conquered and uprooted as refugees. Only a people that, having once ravaged and plundered the cities of others, was forced to endure the pillaging of their own homes and the slaughter of their loved ones, could come to acknowledge the truth of force.

The turn toward apocalypse, then, serves as a kind of groping in the dark for a lesson that other peoples have already learned.

* Penn State as generational flash point.

One thing I know for certain: A leader must emerge from Happy Valley to tie our community together again, and it won’t come from our parents’ generation.

They have failed us, over and over and over again.

I speak not specifically of our parents — I have two loving ones — but of the public leaders our parents’ generation has produced. With the demise of my own community’s two most revered leaders, Sandusky and Joe Paterno, I have decided to continue to respect my elders, but to politely tell them, “Out of my way.”

They have had their time to lead. Time’s up. I’m tired of waiting for them to live up to obligations.Think of the world our parents’ generation inherited. They inherited a country of boundless economic prosperity and the highest admiration overseas, produced by the hands of their mothers and fathers. They were safe. For most, they were endowed opportunities to succeed, to prosper, and build on their parents’ work.

For those of us in our 20s and early 30s, this is not the world we are inheriting.

* Occupy MLA.

* Art deco superheroes.

* Hot on the heels of today’s big SCOTUS news, a new poll indicates a majority of Americans now support the individual mandate. This seems like a big change; what happened? Related: Why The Supreme Court Probably Isn’t About To Declare Medicaid Expansion Unconstitutional.

The second reason is that it is not at all clear how lashing out at federal/state partnerships fosters any real interest in preserving states rights. If the Supreme Court rolls back Congress’ power to provide conditional grants, nothing would prevent Congress from simply cutting the states out of the bargain entirely and assuming total control over programs like Medicaid. The likely outcome of a decision rolling back the ACA’s Medicaid expansion would be to increase the role of the federal government because it would no longer be possible for Congress to trust states to administer major safety net programs.

It is unfortunate that the justices chose to waste their time with a fringe issue that no judge has found to have merit. Nevertheless, there is no reason to doubt that the Affordable Care Act will be upheld.

The Scott Walker recall starts today.

* We are all Newt Gingrich now.

* And in truly important news: why an omniscient foe will always lose a game of chicken.

Another Round

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Another round: religion and politics.

* The U.N. has apparently passed a resolution banning the defamation of religion. In the U.S., at least, truth is absolute defense to defamation…

* Don’t tell the U.N.: quantum theory may make omniscience mathematically impossible.

* Richard Nixon analyzes an episode of All in the Family. Those White House tapes are a national treasure.

* Truth commissions vs. prosecutions.

* A visitor’s guide to Chinese conceptions of hell. Via MeFi.

* And are video games teaching kids the skills they need for the Apocalypse? The Onion reports.

Written by gerrycanavan

February 27, 2009 at 4:33 pm