Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth

Posts Tagged ‘reality is a hoax

Quittin’ Time Links

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tumblr_o62a9nqZo81romv9co1_500* Canamania 2016: Just another reminder that Metamorphoses of Science Fiction (out now!) and Octavia E. Butler (out this November!) appear this year.

* And speaking of Octavia: a previously lost interview from 1995 has resurfaced.

* Call for Papers: Disability and Superheroes.

* A landmark special issue of Extrapolation (if I do say so myself) on Indigenous Futurisms, ed. by Grace Dillon, Michael Levy, and John Rieder.

The Managerial University: A Failed Experiment. 

How Janelle Monáe turned Harriet Tubman’s legacy into an Afrofuturist sci-fi epic.

“Culturally and geographically, EMU football will simply never succeed from an attendance and financial standpoint,” faculty member Howard Bunsis, who helped prepare the report, said in a presentation to the Board of Regents on Friday. “It is a losing proposition – always has been, and always will be. We hardly raise any money for football, and our attendance is the lowest in the country. Some of you believe that we are close to succeeding, if we just throw more money at the situation. This proposition is insane.

* Eleven Theses for the Bernie Sanders Generation.

* Being Melissa Click.

* Wrongthink watch: The Tools of Campus Activists Are Being Turned Against Them. When Slogans Replace Arguments.

* “Literature about medicine may be all that can save us.”

* …but marketplace feminism has simply embraced a mediagenic vision of leadership, most notoriously in the new women’s conference industry, where, Zeisler writes, attendees can “access and sell a certain kind of female power at a comfortable distance from the less individualistic and far less glamorous reality of the majority of women.” These conferences come with a hefty price tag to hear inspiring celebrities and CEOs’ tales about bootstrapping their way to the top and kicking sexism in the rear in stiletto heels. It’s a vision that, she notes, “erases the presence of anyone who isn’t empowered in the most crucial sense of the word—financially…” Feminism, Inc. is big business.

Global warming has made the weather better for most in U.S. — but don’t get used to it, study says. But it’s not all bad news: Chicago is better poised to survive climate change than New York or LA .

Living Near A Highway Is Terrible For Your Health. 1 In 10 Americans Do It.

* Too good to check: Tabloid says it has proof: Ted Cruz’s father is mystery man in Lee Harvey Oswald photo.

Suicide Rates Are Up, But the Most Obvious Explanations Are Probably All Wrong.

The Arctic Suicides: It’s Not The Dark That Kills You. Milwaukee suicide rates lower than rest of US.

Study of exceptionally healthy old people fails to trace their well-being to specific genes.

The Rise of Pirate Libraries.

A Scientific Guide to the Fantastical Predators in Game of Thrones.

* Abolish Neil deGrasse Tyson. But he’s got the right idea here.

* Is there God after Prince? The rejected Simpsons script Conan O’Brien wrote for Prince. Musician’s secret vault reportedly contains ‘thousands’ of unreleased songs. Prince and Springsteen duet, one night only. Springsteen covers “Purple Rain.”

Companies are becoming adept at identifying wealthy customers and marketing to them, creating a money-based caste system. No! It can’t be! That’s impossible!

EVE Online Could Become a Television Show. I’d watch at least a few!

How does a porn parody get made? And elsewhere on the porn beat: Child Porn Is Being Hidden in Legal Porn Sites and It Could Land You in Trouble.

* The new Doctor Who companion has been announced and I’m already annoyed because [felled by assassin’s bullet]

You Should All Be Reading These Criminally Underrated Comics Right Now.

Superman v. capitalism.

The Case Against Reality.

* Twilight of the New York Times.

* The end of literature.

* HBOnarok.

* Clean, safe, and too cheap to meter.

* Chernobyl as an Event: Thirty Years After.

* I never should have agreed to appear on the cover of American Legion Magazine.

* Will America’s Worst Wildfire Disaster Happen in New Jersey?

Kurt Vonnegut, Our Reluctant, Agnostic, Hippy Guru. I taught Galápagos for the first time in years this month and fell in love with it all over again — and I’m presenting on it at a meeting of the Vonnegut Society at ALA in May.

* I’ve been saying it for years: Oxford Scientist Confirms Starting Work, School before 10 AM is Torture.

Kids Play in Backyard While Mom Does Dishes. An Investigation Ensues.

Marijuana is kosher for Passover, leading rabbi rules.

* A recent experiment suggests dolphins may speak to one another in a type of holographic language that may be understood by humans.

* Snitchr.

* Definitely evidence of galactic civilization watch: A Dozen Black Holes Are Mysteriously Spewing Energy In the Same Direction.

Remembering Google Reader.

* But maybe everything dies someday comes back: Ecto Cooler returns.

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Written by gerrycanavan

April 25, 2016 at 5:00 am

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Friday Night Links, Special ‘Jesus Year’ Edition

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Your Climate Change Stat of the Day

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The graph above shows that the Thames Barrier has been raised 119 times since it became operational in 1982 (76 were to protect against tidal flooding and 43 were to alleviate fluvial flooding).

Closures of the barrier have increased through the decades. During its operation, just over two thirds of closures have been since 2000. It was closed four times in the 1980s, 35 times in the 1990s, and 80 times since 2000. Thanks, @studentactivism!

Written by gerrycanavan

November 1, 2012 at 10:45 am

I’ve Never Seen Anything Like This and I’m at a Loss for Expletives to Describe What This Storm Could Do

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Written by gerrycanavan

October 26, 2012 at 2:19 pm

Wednesday

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Tuesday Night Quick Links

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Friday Linkfest

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* The Portal 2s that could have been. I do, I happily admit, want to play all of these.

* Drop everything! My brilliant friend and colleague Melody Jue is now blogging at Philosophy of Water.

* At right is your photo of the day: An aurora over Faskrudsfjordur, Iceland.

* Joss Whedon explains how to write a sequel.

* Steal $80 million in a Ponzi scheme, get 18 months. Steal $4,367 in food stamps, get 3 years.

* “A dozen earthquakes in northeastern Ohio were almost certainly induced by injection of gas-drilling wastewater into the earth,” Ohio oil and gas regulators said today.

* The year without a winter. Things are going to get weirder. But don’t worry: God told James Inhofe global warming is a hoax.

* “I have not heard of another hug”: Janet Bell, Derrick Bell’s widow, speaks out.

* Pat Robertson gets one right: he says we ought to legalize it.

* The Seuss book no one’s bought us (yet): The Seven Lady Godivas: The True Facts Concerning History’s Barest Family.

* Jacob Burak crunches the odds on Russian Roulette. But he’s completely failed to account for the quantum immortality factor.

* Science quantifies the Tina Fey effect.

“When all other variables in the model are held at their mean, those who watched the SNL clip had a 45.4 percent probability of saying that Palin’s nomination made them less likely to vote for McCain,” they write. “This same probability drops to 34 percent among those who saw coverage of the debate through other media. Exposure to the clip had no significant effect on the likelihood of voting for Obama.”

* When Terry Kneiss wins a Showcase Showdown, son, he wins it.

* On chess, gender, and Laszlo Polgar’s Grandmaster Experiment.

* For more than two years, Adrian Schoolcraft secretly recorded every roll call at the 81st Precinct in Brooklyn and captured his superiors urging police officers to do two things in order to manipulate the “stats” that the department is under pressure to produce: Officers were told to arrest people who were doing little more than standing on the street, but they were also encouraged to disregard actual victims of serious crimes who wanted to file reports. I’m shocked, shocked! Followup to this This American Life story.

* The headline reads, “Breakthrough Alzheimer’s treatment stops brain damage in mice.”

* And TPM has today’s sci-fi architecture porn.

How Will We Break It to the Jesuits?

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IHE on Rick Santorum: …The Tampa Bay Tribune’s PolitiFact news service is reporting that Santorum — since 2008 — has linked higher education to the work of Satan. In a 2008 talk at Ave Maria University, Santorum discussed the way Satan has attacked “great institutions of America.”

Where did Satan start? According to Santorum, “The place where he was, in my mind, the most successful and first — first successful was in academia. He understood pride of smart people. He attacked them at their weakest. They were in fact smarter than everybody else and could come up with something new and different — pursue new truths, deny the existence of truth, play with it because they’re smart. And so academia a long time ago fell.”

Scholastic Burn

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Written by gerrycanavan

February 26, 2012 at 9:29 pm

Some More Tuesday Links

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* I wrote a short blog post for HASTAC compiling some recent thoughts and links on “openness” in the university system, which are likely no surprise to anyone who follows this blog but which I include here for the sake of completeness regardless.

* It’s cute that Josh Marshall thinks Bachmann just making sh!t up means her run at the GOP nomination is over. Of course, what this actually means is that it’s now an open question whether Gardasil causes mental retardation in young girls.

* Elizabeth Warren announces for Senate tomorrow.

* Here comes Al Gore’s Climate Reality Project.

* The Trash|Track Project asks: Why do we know so much about the supply chain and so little about the removal chain? Via Melody.

* And via longform.org: On Gender-Identity Disorder and the DSM.

The DSM work group assigned to gender identity disorder, a panel of specialized field experts, has already bowed to some external pressures. It has made clear that it intends to change the name of the diagnosis from “disorder” to “dysphoria”—which describes a passing mood rather than a fixed state. The work group has also made public its plans to not only preserve the core GID diagnosis, but to retain an even more controversial entry: GID in children.

… The second argument in favor of keeping GID in the diagnostic manual is where things get ethically murky. The removal of the diagnosis may also remove insurance coverage for transsexual adults who are being treated with hormonal or surgical reassignment. As of now, a diagnosis of mental illness is the only mechanism that transsexuals have for medical insurance to cover mastectomies, testosterone injections, and genital reconstruction surgeries (though very few insurance companies cover any sort of gender reassignment, because it is most often considered “cosmetic”).

Megan Smith, a Nebraska-based psychotherapist and an advocate for the removal of GID from the DSM, claims that the insurance argument is the one she most often encounters. Smith believes keeping the diagnosis for the sake of insurance coverage is “unethical and unscientific.” Smith argues, “I don’t believe it’s our obligation as mental health professionals to change psychiatric evaluations in order to play ball with insurance companies.”

Friday Afternoon About-to-Go-See-Harry-Potter Links

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* Erick Erickson, cheering on apocalypse: Obama has a legacy to worry about. Should the United States lose its bond rating, it will be called the “Obama Depression”. Congress does not get pinned with this stuff. See also. Steven Benen on the reality gap. Ezra Klein: How default would harm homeowners, cities, businesses and everyone else.

* And then there’s Rick Perry.

I tell people, that “personal property” and the ownership of that personal property is crucial to our way of life.

Our founding fathers understood that it was a very important part of the pursuit of happiness. Being able to own things that are your own is one of the things that makes America unique. But I happen to think that it’s in jeopardy.

It’s in jeopardy because of taxes; it’s in jeopardy because of regulation; it’s in jeopardy because of a legal system that’s run amok. And I think it’s time for us to just hand it over to God and say, “God, You’re going to have to fix this.” […]

I think it’s time for us to use our wisdom and our influence and really put it in God’s hands. That’s what I’m going to do, and I hope you’ll join me.

* Osama bin Laden was working to assemble a team of militants to attack the U.S. on the 10th anniversary of 9/11, according to communications Navy SEALs seized from his Pakistani hideout when they killed the al Qaeda leader this spring. The article claims that the planned attack targeted the U.S. train system.

* Fox News is comparing the News Corp. hacking scandal to companies that were hacked. The only suitable reaction is awe.

* And local news now: Lawsuit filed over Duke basketball tickets.

A woman filed a lawsuit Friday against her sister, her sister’s husband and Duke University regarding the transfer of two tickets that once belonged to her father for games at Cameron Indoor Stadium. Katina Dorton is seeking unspecified damages and asking the court to invalidate the “fraudulent transfer” to Gordon and Sophia Caudle that occurred without the knowledge or consent of her father or other family members, according to the complaint.

“This is important and it’s valuable,” said Randall M. Roden, an attorney for Dorton. “She’s a graduate. She genuinely wants to support the Blue Devils and go to the games. But she was shocked by the way Duke handled this.”

Wednesday Night Links

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* The local alt-weekly asked me to write a short piece about Facebook as part of their cover story on social media and The Social Network. Here’s what I came up with.

* Science fiction comes alive: we’re discovering tidal-locked Earthlike planets with thin habitable bands and an approximately 100% chance for life and building artificial wombs.

* The headline reads, “Swanky new Vegas hotel’s ‘death ray’ proves inconvenient for some guests.” Case’s fancy Frank Gehry building has a similar heat-ray side effect, with bonus surprise avalanches throughout Cleveland’s miserable ten-month winter.

* We must desecrate Muslim graves, or the terrorists will win.

* A judge has decriminalized prostitution in Ontario on the grounds that existing anti-prostitution laws hurt women. This is a big step forward, if at the same time something like the lesser of two evils. Legalization by itself is not a panacea.

* Rumors of Wes Anderson’s next. I’m not happy about this:

But The Playlist talked to sources and heard that Anderson is seeking to cast a boy and girl, each 12, for the lead roles. That leads to supposition that Anderson might be moving forward in a mode inspired by Fantastic Mr. Fox, which would be not such a bad thing at all. Younger characters, a more youthful tone and/or family-oriented story?

* It is really hard to win the Mega Millions lottery. So hard that it can be difficult to comprehend what long odds confront its players.

Why not try for free on this Mega Millions lottery simulator? You’ll be able to try the same numbers over and over, simulating playing twice a week for a year or 10. You’ll never win. Via Cynical-C.

* John McCain, climate conspiracy theorist.

In 2007, McCain said of global warming: “Unequivocally I believe that it’s real.” He also accurately predicted that global warming means “much more violent weather patterns that are going to — and then of course that increases the disasters that befall countries like Bangladesh.” Sadly, now that Pakistan, India, and Bangladesh have faced catastrophic floods of an unprecedented scale during the hottest year ever recorded, McCain is a global warming skeptic. The Straight Talk Express has derailed into the Tea Party abyss.

* James O’Keefe, huge dirtbag. More here.

* James Cameron vs. the tar sands.

* And these hot new doctoral rankings have been scientifically engineered to make everyone feel as bad as possible. Enjoy!

Scenes from the Apocalypse

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Thousands of dead fish have washed up on beaches in New Jersey and Massachusetts. Low oxygen levels in warm water is believed to be to blame.

Mad Men Season 11, Hallucinogenic Spores, and Adamantium Bones

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* Put This One finds a wonderful image from Mad Men, Season 11. (Thanks, Jacob!)

* The Chicago Tribune explains why doing research in the archives is so fun. The answer may surprise you! Hint: Fungus on books, they say, is a likely source of hallucinogenic spores.

* The American Family Association ups the ante on the whole “Ground Zero mosque” pseudo-scandal: No more mosques in America, period.

* The Founding Fathers never intended to separate church and state. And they were 17 feet tall and had adamantium bones.

* Rachel Maddow on the war on brains.

* And Political Wire brings the news that we’re actually going to eliminate birthright citizenship: 49% of Americans already want to, before the fools and liars in the media have even had their chance to beat the drum.

* The climate situation is just obscenely dire.

* And just in time for our triumphant return: Huge hand-drawn panorama of London, 1845.

Meanwhile, in Russia (and Greenland)

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Record temperatures and historic drought have led to hundreds of wildfires all across the country. Climate change is a hoax.

UPDATE: Over the weekend I completely forgot to mention the slab of ice that broke off Greenland, thereby proving climate change’s hoaxitude for all time.

Written by gerrycanavan

August 10, 2010 at 4:37 am