Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth

Posts Tagged ‘slavery

Thursday Night Links!

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* [Deletes blog, deletes Twitter, unplugs phone, burns everything]

* A little bit on the nose, don’t you think? Scott Walker Strikes ‘Truth,’ ‘Human Condition’ from Wisconsin Idea. The Walker administration has now backed off the plan. The Power of the Wisconsin Idea.

Top 11 things to know about the proposed budget.

* Meet the Regents, Wisconsin, or Welcome to Our New University System Overlords.

* Ursula Heise on what happens when dystopia becomes routine.

* The FCC clears the deck on net neutrality, possibly for good.

* Questions for Harper Lee’s editor. Be suspicious.

From Ph.D. to the professorship, the market moves downward. Of the graduates who get tenure-track jobs, most end up at universities ranked lower than the ones they attended. Virtually no one moves up. Even moving from a fourth-tier Ph.D. program to a tenure-track professorship at a third-tier one is nearly unheard of.

3 Things Academic Leaders Believe About Online Education.

To portray Samus’ sudden refusal to carry out her genocide mission, the game has the player nurture and nourish life instead of ending it. The fundamental nature of Metroid’s game-design ethos is subtly changed to reflect the altered tone. Paths are no longer opened with destructive weapons; instead, progress can only be made when the player provides life-giving nourishment to a newborn whose entire family they’ve just killed. The significance is that the player cannot stand idly by while the metroid child eats; they must lead the child to the food and take part in feeding them. Understanding Metroid II.

* Frozen vs. the patriarchy.

* Trains and safety.

The FRA gave the site of Tuesday’s crash a probability of 3.1 percent — or, all things being equal, about one crash every 32 years. (Ironically, the last crash at the intersection was just over 30 years ago.)

But in Elmwood Park, New Jersey, there’s a New Jersey Transit crossingwith a predicted-collision probability of 49.6 percent — a coin flip, more or less. In total, 31 crossings in the New York area have probabilities above 10 percent, plus another 31 in Chicago.

* Ursula K. Le Guin on the future of the left. Ursula K. Le Guin on men.

* Presenting the original pitch for Game of Thrones, with unspeakably gross Arya-Jon incest plot.

* The original pitch for The Muppet Show. More links after the clip!

Why Transparent Has Lost The Trust Of The Trans Community.

* It’s time to stop letting sports team owners blackmail taxpayers for new stadiums.

* “Let’s talk about sex in English class.” Okay but let me get tenure first.

* “What Roman slave owners knew about managing staff.” Um.

As Parents Get More Choice, S.F. Schools Resegregate. But only artisanal segregation is good enough for my kids. Meanwhile, in Mississippi: A School District That Was Never Desegregated.

NYPD Has a Plan to Magically Turn Anyone It Wants Into a Felon.

* Strange Maps takes up The Man in the High Castle.

The Truth About What Went Wrong With The Third Season Of Star Trek. Roddenberry himself takes most of the blame in this telling.

The Amazing Village in The Netherlands Just for People with Dementia.

* Singlism and married privilege.

* Two takes on language and activism at Ravishly and Student Activism.

* Jonathan Chait and the Overton Window.

Yung found that, during the government audits, the number of sexual assaults reported by those schools increased by about 44 percent. But after the audits were over, the number of reports dropped back down to their previous levels. The study also found that the vast majority of participating schools frequently reported zero cases of annual off-campus sexual assaults, even though the Clery Act requires officials to make a “good faith” effort to work with local police to get that data.

* The arc of history is long, but Harvard professors are now barred from having sex with undergraduates.

* Twitter CEO admits Twitter is terrible.

* What Happens When a Prominent Male Feminist Is Accused of Rape?

* Former Teacher At Elite L.A. Girls School Arrested For Sex Crimes.

* Twilight of the fraternities.

* You had me at “sci-fi alterations of 19th century portraits.”

Believing that life is fair might make you a terrible person.

* Oculus Rex.

* “My dad, the pornographer.”

* And the kids aren’t all right.

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Thursday Links!

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* I’ll be speaking next Thursday at “Between Activism and Apocalypse: The Work of Margaret Atwood” at Indiana University. The schedule for the symposium is here.

* CFP: Stage The Future 2: The Second International Conference on Science Fiction Theatre.

* SF short-short of the day: Isaac Asimov’s “Silly Asses.”

* Here’s the calendar of events for C21 this semester.

* Cheryl Abbate has a blog post on the vicious hate mail she’s received after being thrust into the media spotlight.

* “Things like computer vision are starting to work; speech recognition is starting to work There’s quite a bit of acceleration in the development of AI systems,” says Bart Selman, a Cornell professor and AI ethicist who was at the event with Musk. “And that’s making it more urgent to look at this issue.” AI Has Arrived, and That Really Worries the World’s Brightest Minds.

* Of course it’s already worse than you think.

* Elsewhere in mad billionaire news: Internet! in! Spaaaaaaaaaaaaace!

* Gender Differences in the Road to the Doctoral Degree. Less support, more debt, more time to degree.

* Forbidden Planet reviews Richard McGuire’s incredible graphic novel Here.

* Hours After State Of The Union, Senate Targets National Parks. Once again, it’s always worse than you think.

* Saul Goodman, the last difficult man.

* A smart observation from Peter Paik: “Common Core teaches students that there is only one way to read a text (to glean information) but there are many ways to solve a math problem (the target of much outrage on social media).”

* Some Colleges Are Moving Past Eve Ensler’s “Cisnormative” ‘Vagina Monologues’ — And That’s OK.

* Occupy the Syllabus.

* Milestone Media rides again.

* How ‘Harry Potter’ fans won a four-year fight against child slavery.

* English professors combine areas of study for new specialization.

The department, known for its expertise in disability and LGBT studies, is looking to newer faculty to blend the two topics into a common subject area.Robert McRuer, who chairs the English department, said he was the first scholar to combine LGBT studies with disability studies and call it “crip theory.” The theory looks at the histories of and issues within the LGBT and disabled communities, which have both faced marginalization. “Crip” is a term that people with disabilities have “reclaimed,” he said.

Personally I’d send that name back for another round of workshopping, but what do I know.

* Oregon Was Founded As a Racist Utopia.

* I actually always thought Joss should have had a David Boreanaz cameo in the background of the Firefly pilot and then never mention it again.

* Marvel is teasing a big Crisis-on-Infinite-Earths-style reboot, for the first time in its history.

* Simon Pegg is co-writing Star Trek 3. [raises one eyebrow]

* And great news for KSR fans: J. Michael Straczynski To Write Spike TV’s ‘Red Mars’ Drama Series Project.

This is a supercut of all the moments in A New Hope where characters interacted with machines, doors, screens, levers, knobs and buttons.

* Violent crime on college campuses is decreasing, but the number of sworn and armed police officers on campuses continues to rise, according to a new report from the Bureau of Justice Statistics… Nearly 70 percent of colleges and universities operated full law-enforcement agencies in 2012, and 94 percent of those officers are authorized to use a firearm.

* Meanwhile, on the town and gown beat: NYU decided not to report an attempted murder to the police.

* Abolish college sports watch: Before Gary Andersen goes on, he wants to make one thing clear. A part of his surprising departure from Wisconsin had to do with admission standards.

* When choosing between doing good and doing evil, don’t forget there’s always a third option.

* Mamas, don’t let your babies grow up to be cowboys.

* And a reminder that SFFTV is looking for your submission for its Star Trek at 50″ special issue.

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Thursday Links!

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* 2015 CFP for the MRG: “Enthusiasm for Revolution.”

* Reminder: Call for Postdoctoral Fellow: Alternative Futurisms.

* Criminalizing parenting.

The Long, Wondrous Interview with Junot Díaz You Have to Read. By the great Taryne Taylor! From the same issue of Paradoxa that has my essay on Snowpiercer in it.

Panel Conversation on Afrofutrism between Nnedi Okorafor and Sofia Samatar at the University of Texas.

Ellen Craft, the Slave Who Posed as a Master and Made Herself Free.

Having paddled so hard to avoid the Scylla of hyperprofessionalization in English studies, some promoters of alternative careers may not notice that they are in the grip of Charybdis’s hyperprofessionalization of everything else. The harder they paddle, the harder the whirlpool pulls us all down. Great piece from Marc Bousquet addressing a number of key issues in academic labor.

* Universities without Austerity.

A History of the MLA Job List.

* The headline reads, “UMass Ends Use of Student Informants.”

* The Data Sublime.

Loved Your Nanny Campus? Start-Up Pledges Similar Services for Grads.

These Two States Will Revoke Your License If You Can’t Pay Back Your Student Loans.

* He put that cartoon up on the classroom whiteboard, and the teacher left it there all day as a lesson in free speech.

These World Leaders Are a Worse Threat to Free Press Than Terrorism.

Ultra-Orthodox Jewish Newspaper Edits Female World Leaders Out of Charlie Hebdo March.

* What’s Missing From the Debate on Obama’s Free Community-College Plan.

* The end of the university in Louisiana.

* Elvis vs. the Beatles.

* Malcolm Harris: The Small Miracle You Haven’t Heard About Amid the Carnage in Syria.

* Urick v. Koenig, part two.

Report: Duke Ignored Warnings on Research Fraud.

53 Historians Weigh In on Barack Obama’s Legacy.

* Back to the Future, Time Travel, and the Secret History of the 1980s.

To be clear, late-night votes might be a bit of a problem for Joseph Morrissey, the newly sworn-in Virginia House delegate who must report to his jail cell about 7:30 each evening.

Muslim Americans are the staunchest opponents of military attacks on civilians, compared with members of other major religious groups Gallup has studied in the United States. Seventy-eight percent of Muslim Americans say military attacks on civilians are never justified.

$1 Million Prize for Scientists Who Can Cure Human Aging. Sure, I’ll go in for a few bucks on that.

Trial by Ebola.

* Too real:  Woman’s Parents Accepting Of Mixed-Attractiveness Relationship.

What If We Could Live In A World Without War But Way More Famine?

Blue-eyed humans have a single, common ancestor.

A Cybernetic Implant That Allows Paralyzed Rats To Walk Again.

In 2014, Florida recorded at least 346 deaths inside of their prison system, an all-time high for the state in spite of the fact that its overall prison population has hovered around 100,000 people for the five previous years. Hundreds of these deaths from 2014 and from previous years are now under investigation by the DOJ because of the almost unimaginable role law enforcement officers are playing in them.

* Last week: The City Is Reportedly Losing $10 Million a Week Because the NYPD Isn’t Writing Enough Tickets. This week: NYPD Slowdown Turns Into “Broken Windows” Crackdown.

The point of a strike is to stop production to show the work you do is essential. The NYPD slowdown has proven the opposite.

The School-to-Prison Pipeline: Time to Shut it Down.

Every day, cops toss dangerous military-style grenades during raids, with little oversight and horrifying results.

Albuquerque cop mistakenly guns down undercover narcotics officer during bungled $60 meth bust. Elsewhere in Albuquerque.

1 In 3 College Men In Survey Said They Would Rape A Woman If They Could Get Away With It.

Danny Boyle Having “Serious” Conversations About 28 Months Later. I’m in as long as it’s the first step towards Years.

* Radically unnecessary Avatar sequels reportedly having script problems. What could explain it?

* Frozen in everything, forever and ever amen.

* Seems legit: NASCAR driver says his ex-girlfriend is a trained assassin.

This Computer Program Is ‘Incapable Of Losing’ At Poker.

Scholar and activist Glen Coulthard on the connection between indigenous and anticapitalist struggles.

* This seems like glorified Avengers fan fiction but I’m on board. Meanwhile, in Fantastic Four news.

* Ah, there’s my problem: iPhone Separation Anxiety Makes You Dumber, Study Finds.

* I’m you, from the future! At the 16th most popular webcomic.

* They say time is the fire in which we burn.

* The Marquette Tribune is following the ongoing McAdams suspension at the university.

Study says we prefer singers who look like big babies during good times. This research must be stopped. Some things mankind was never meant to know.

* “To her disappointment she found that the Purchased Products did not even feel different from her regular socks and tights.”

* Community get a premiere date.

whothefuckismydndcharacter.com.

And Cookie-Based Research Suggests Powerful People Are Sloppier Eaters. Of course the sloppy among us have always known this.

Written by gerrycanavan

January 15, 2015 at 8:30 am

Posted in Look at what I found on the Internet

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Monday Morning Links!

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* You’ve been waiting for it: the inevitable “Too Many Cooks” followup, “Unedited Footage of a Bear.” Here’s your instant criticism on the Adult Swim infomercial phenomenon.

* I got hooked on this after a Facebook recommendation, so why shouldn’t you? Papers, Please.

* No one could have predicted: Cuban Oil May Prove A Boon For U.S. Companies.

* NYT: Prosecute Torturers and Their Bosses.
* Andrew Liptak at Kirkus has your brief history of the Culture.

* UW-Superior to suspend 5 academic programs.

* Your guide to academic interviewing from The Professor Is In: The Question Is Not the Question. It’s a little hard for me to believe how absolutely clueless I was about all this back when, but this lesson was by far the most helpful thing I learned from my mock interview. Absolutely do a mock interview if you have the option.

* M.F.A.s: An Increasingly Popular, Increasingly Bad Financial Decision.

* Dissent on the invention of jaywalking.

* Tragedy in Brooklyn as two police officers are assassinated. Aside from how horrible this event is in itself, I’ve been stunned how immediately and how viciously this has been politicized, not just by known bad actors like Giuliani but even by middle-of-the-road empty suits like Pataki.

* NYPD Officer Repeatedly Punches 12-Year-Old Black Boy As Colleagues Subdue Him, And A Lawyer Sees The Whole Thing. Prosecutor Says He Knew Some Witnesses Were Lying To The Ferguson Grand Jury. Meet the Pro-Slavery Fairview Park Auxiliary Cop. Family of toddler critically injured by SWAT team facing $1 million in medical bills. Woman Tries To Trademark ‘I Can’t Breathe’ To Sell Merchandise. “I Can Breathe,” and the Occasional Fear of Covering Protests.

High incarceration may be more harmful than high crime.

* Appeals Court Rules People Institutionalized for Mental Illness Still Have Right to Guns.

* If Apple Were A Worker Cooperative, Each Employee Would Earn At Least $403K.

* In Defense of Economic Disobedience.

* Justine Sacco Is Good at Her Job, and How I Came To Peace With Her.

* #realtalk: Serial Sucked And Wasted Everyone’s Time. I’ll allow it, SNL.

How the NFL leaves players broken — and broke.

* Incognito mode: Americans aren’t getting married, and researchers think porn is part of the problem.

* It’s almost 2015, which means it’s time to convince ourselves that the Obama administration hasn’t been a complete and total disaster. Over to you Matt.

Indeed, this is one of the crowning lessons of Pay Any Price: that the United States is suffering from a widespread crisis of accountability, one that transcends distinctions between the public and private sectors and that encompasses both. The sources of power, real power, seem more remote and mysterious to Americans than ever before. It is no coincidence that this November’s midterm elections saw the lowest voter turnout in 72 years (a pathetic 36.3 percent). Most Americans now spend their lives hostage to forces they can neither understand nor control nor hope to shape in any meaningful way. People see themselves as objects to be acted upon, not as thinking subjects. If the architects of our post-9/11 politics believed they were subverting democracy in order to save it, that we should pay any price to keep our people safe, they should be applauded for succeeding in at least one, crucial, part of their proposition. We have paid, again, and again, and again.

Is string theory revealing reality’s deep laws? Or, as some detractors have claimed, is it a mathematical mirage that has sidetracked a generation of physicists?

* An orangutan held in an Argentine zoo can be freed and transferred to a sanctuary after a court recognized the ape as a “non-human person” unlawfully deprived of its freedom, local media reported on Sunday.

* And why do you hate the South? I don’t! I don’t hate it! I don’t hate it!

A Very Special Second Helping of Friday Links

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* A new Kelly Link story at McSweeney’s. It’s a very Merry Christmas indeed.

Serial decided when it would end, so it could continue. What’s the Verdict? Racism and the Case against Serial. More on That Later: The Truth about Serial. I don’t want to brag guys but I solved this whole thing yesterday in just one tweet:

* Silent Spring: Autism linked to 3rd trimester pollution exposure.

Why Many Inner City Schools Function Like Prisons. School Segregation, the Continuing Tragedy of Ferguson.

Over the past two weeks, I have fluctuated between anger and grief. I feel surrounded by Black death. What a privilege, to concern yourself with seeming good while the rest of us want to seem worthy of life.

Your Waitress, Your Professor.

My perhaps naïve hope is that when I tell students I’m not only an academic, but a “survival” jobholder, I’ll make a dent in the artificial, inaccurate division society places between blue-collar work and “intelligent” work.

* The best thing on the Internet today: Pulp Nintendo 1, 2, 3.

* You’ll never get me into one of those things: the transporter is real. 

* John Protevi has another good post on the situation at Marquette for those following this story on which I am not commenting (am not commenting, AM not commenting, am NOT commenting…):

As to Marquette’s current course of action, I find it troubling, but I would hazard a guess at to their motivations, based on a presumption that university administrations use a risk management rationality: MU may think that their risk of losing a Title IX suit or OCR complaint claiming that they did nothing when a student was subject to the creation of a hostile work or education environment was greater than the risk of their losing a wrongful discipline case by McAdams, as well as the cost to their reputation if people cast this as an academic freedom issue and the cost to their donor base by alums who take McAdams’s side.

The above is an explanation, not a justification. The university’s risk management calculations might converge with normative values if one feels that a claim of academic freedom does not excuse the creation of a hostile environment for a student.

* Gritty Realism, Snowpiercer, and the Tedious Trauma of the Real. I’m just glad we’ve finally found a scenario where rotating enslavement of children is the progressive solution.

* Who do you think would win if Batman fought Superman?

* And Merry Christmas, just kidding: Santa’s real workshop: the town in China that makes the world’s Christmas decorations.

Christmas decorations being made at a factory in Yiwu city, Zhejiang province, China - 15 Dec 2014

Bottomless Thursday Links, No Refills

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Cheryl Abbate has decided to leave Marquette. Marquette has apparently decided to suspend John McAdams, though who knows for how long. As an untenured junior faculty member (who has, incidentally, been a subject of McAdams’s unsubstantiated attacks in the past, as has nearly every other professor I know on campus), I feel somewhat constrained speaking about all this, and so I won’t — but I’m unhappy about the first and queasy about the second, and will be free to discuss this all at length with you in a mere four or five years. It’ll still be relevant then, I’m sure: I expect this whole tangled mess to be a go-to example on Academic Freedom and Repellent Speech for many years to come, not to mention the lawsuits. It’s a very complicated and miserable situation that seems like it just got a whole lot more complicated and miserable. I’m sorry for a campus and for the students that are going to be dealing with the fallout from this situation for a long time.

* CFP at Milwaukee’s Own C21: “Indigeneities.”

* Climate change comes to Shishmaref, Alaska. Arctic is warming at twice the rate of anywhere else on Earth.

* Hugely disappointing news from Vermont: they’ve giving up their plan for single payer. I really thought this was how it would finally come to America.

* The word you’re looking for is “racism.” Just say racism.

* But dead men loot no stores. Property-based ethics.

* Financial aid and class struggle.

* In defense of “hands up.”

In recent weeks and months, the power of the gesture has never been clearer: “hands up” transforms the visual sign of surrender into one of political resistance. Nevertheless, it’s worth looking at the complex cultural and historical work the move engages—the multiple moves it makes. As my students register, “hands up” isn’t quite the Black Power salute, given that it rehearses a moment of full-body interpellation by the police. But as one student observes, part of its force is rooted in this very repetition. To throw one’s hands up in the stadium, in the street, and (perhaps most powerfully) for the camera is to convert that gesture of surrender into something else: a shared performance that makes visible the deeply historical and split-second choreographies of power in which bodies deemed criminally other—deemed threatening, which is to say deemed black—become the objects of state violence. “Hands up” cites and reroutes these choreographies, a physical disruption not unlike playing dead in solidarity with the dead, a form of protest to which it is closely aligned.

Police Investigating Texas Officer For Tasing 76-Year-Old Man. Ohio Detective Berated Girlfriend of Black Man Shot and Killed by Cops. California Cop Tweets That He Will ‘Use (His) God Given And Law Appointed Right To Kill’ Protesters. Wesleyan University Forced to Pay Police Overtime for Protesting Police Brutality.  UPenn President Criticized For Joining Protesters’ ‘Die-In.’ Cops Off Campus.

“There is an unbroken line of police violence in the US that takes us all the way back to the days of slavery.”

Supreme Court Says Ignorance Of The Law Is An Excuse — If You’re A Cop.

On Monday, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the same standard doesn’t necessarily apply to police. In a splintered 8-1 ruling, the court found that cops who pulled over Nicholas Heien for a broken taillight were justified in a subsequent search of Heien’s car, even though North Carolina law says that having just one broken taillight is not a violation of the law.

Policing is a Dirty Job, But Nobody’s Gotta Do It: 6 Ideas for a Cop-Free World.

* Capitalism and Eric Garner.

Of course Americans are OK with torture. Look at how we treat our prisoners. The Luxury Homes That Torture and Your Tax Dollars Built. They Said ‘No’ to Torture: The Real Heroes of the Bush Years. Skinny Puppy demands $666,000 in royalties from U.S. government for using their music in Guantanamo torture.

* This is one of the better readings of Sorkinism and its worship of white masculinity I’ve seen.

* Need to learn to think like an administrator? There’s a retreat for that.

* Socialize Uber.

* ASU English goes 5/5 — without a pay increase. ASU English by the Numbers. Meanwhile, you’ll never guess.

The Arizona Board of Regents on Friday approved a 20 percent raise in base pay for Arizona State University President Michael Crow that pushes his total annual compensation to nearly $900,000.

The $95,000 raise is his first increase in base pay since 2007, before the recession, and could be enough to place him back among the top 20 earners for public-college presidents.

Straight Talk About ‘Adjunctification.’ Come for the one or two sensible points, stay for the nightmare flame war…

The ‘Job Market’ That Is Not One.

* Meanwhile meanwhile: According to a report from the NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, citing anonymous sources, U-M offered Harbaugh $8 million per year to coach the Wolverines.

* Gasp! The secret to the Uber economy is wealth inequality.

The Judicial Ethics of Serial.

This risk of bias is not a reason to question content like Serial that draws attention to the problems inherent in our criminal justice system. It’s a reason to question a system of judicial elections that makes judges vulnerable to their influence.

The Elf on the Shelf is preparing your child to live in a future police state, professor warns. Yeah. “Future.”

Teach For America could miss recruitment mark by more than 25 percent.

* Both I Was Gang Raped at a U-VA Frat 30 Years Ago, and No One Did Anything and Jackie’s Story and UVA’s Stalinist Rules, working from opposite directions, suggest that universities should just not be in the business of adjudicating sexual assault claims at all.

This Is Why One Study Showed 19% Of College Women Experience Sexual Assault And Another Said 0.6%.

* Trigger warnings and law school.

Five Stories About Addiction.

Oberlin College denies requests from students to suspend failing grades after protests.

This past Friday, over 1,300 Oberlin students signed a petition for college administrators asking for understanding and “alternative modes of learning” as they continue to cope with what’s happening across the country.

They asked for the normal grading system to be “replaced with a no-fail mercy period,” and said “basically no student …especially students of color should be failing a class this semester.”

This actually really threw me. I think I must be getting old.

* Surveilling students, 21st century style.

* Scientists Are Using Twitter Data To Track Depression.

* It’s unclear how many people changed their views in the course of the yearlong debate. And questions remain. The most obvious one is whether the boycott has had any effect. In one specific sense, no. The ASA said it would not work with any Israeli universities, but it has not yet had any offers to do so. On a broader level, though, the vote has left an indelible mark. “We got into the mainstream press and triggered a number of conversations not visible before about Israel-Palestine,” says the ASA’s president, Lisa Duggan, a professor at New York University. “In that sense we had done what we wanted to do.”

* And they say there’s no accountability: Top Financier Skips Out On Train Fare, Gets Barred From His Profession For Life.

The Cuomo administration announced Wednesday that it would ban hydraulic fracturing in New York State, ending years of uncertainty by concluding that the controversial method of extracting gas from deep underground could contaminate the state’s air and water and pose inestimable public-health risks.

* Cuba’s cool again. Please be advised.

Werner Herzog Inspirationals.

* Parks & Rec is SF now.

All The Scenes That Could Have Been Cut From The Hobbit Trilogy.

* Oh, so now Tim Burton doesn’t think it’s cool to make the same movie over and over.

Father Makes Son Play Through Video Game History, Chronologically.

18 Badass Women You Probably Didn’t Hear About In 2014.

* The Racket would have been insane.

* Reading the gospel of New Athiesm leaves you with the feeling that atheism is simply a reprimand — a stern “hush hush” to the querulous children of faith. But the problem with this view is that it drains atheism of the metaphysical force of its own position. What makes atheism so radically different from agnosticism is precisely its desire to meet the extraordinary truth claims of religion head-on with rival propositions about the world. Hitchens’s claim that “our belief is not a belief” could not be more wrong. On the contrary, as the literary critic James Wood writes, “atheism is structurally related to the belief it negates, and is necessarily a kind of rival belief.” He claims being an agnostic would be “a truer liberation” since it would mean disregarding the issue altogether. The atheist, on the other hand, is always trapped in a kind of negative relationship to the God whose existence she denies in the first place, but whose scandalous absence she is forever proclaiming — a paradox memorably captured by Samuel Beckett’s Hamm when he exclaims, “The bastard! He doesn’t exist!”

The One Character JK Rowling Regrets Killing—It’s Not Who You’d Expect.

* Saturday Morning Breakfast Cereal explains evolution.

* Congratulations, Bitcoin, the worst investment of 2014.

* And you had me at let’s bring Star Trek back to TV. Yes, let’s! Maybe we can just skip Star Tr3k altogether.

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Written by gerrycanavan

December 18, 2014 at 8:52 am

Posted in Look at what I found on the Internet

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Good Morning, It’s Sunday Morning Links

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* A rare correction: actually your pets will burn in hell. gerrycanavan.wordpress.com regrets the error.

* Watch out, modern-day slaves, the Pope might un-denounce your exploitation next!

* Sad update: Cheryl Abbate has been run out of Marquette.

Adding that to the explicitly military and overseas contingency funding, the real dimensions of the US military-intelligence-police-prison complex begin to come into view: a staggering $830 billion, more than 80 cents out of every dollar in the funding bill, is devoted to killing, spying on, imprisoning or otherwise oppressing the people of the world, including the American people.

* The federal government is using data gimmicks to mask the true scope of homelessness.

* Is It Bad Enough Yet?

* To end police violence, we must end policing as we know it.

* Timelapse video reveals massive size of New York City protests.

Ferguson to Increase Police Ticketing to Close City’s Budget Gap.

* Point/counterpoint: Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia says torture is totally legit. Ex-NFL punter Chris Kluwe says maybe not.

“I resign. Happy? Goodbye.”

* But what we do know is that the histories of slavery and of capitalism look very different if we understand them in relation to each other. The next time we walk the streets of Lower Manhattan or the grounds of Harvard University, we should think at least in passing of the millions of enslaved workers who helped make some of that grandeur possible, and to the ways that slavery’s legacy persists today.

* U.S. Schools Saying Goodbye to Foreign Languages. Horrible.

* Cruel optimism we can believe in: What if Democrats had their own Tea Party–esque rebellion? Why the Democratic Party could seriously change — for real, this time.

* Ever Say Never Again: On the History and Future of James Bond.

* Scientists think the Big Bang could’ve created a mirror universe where time flows backward.

* What are the bastards ruining now? Buffy.

* Oh, also Blade Runner.

Is Studying Buffy the Vampire Slayer More Important Than Studying Shakespeare? I say teach the controversy.

* I think I would say Freddie is probably the worst possible spokesperson for the conversation the feminist left should be having in the wake of the Rolling Stone UVA scandal. But no one else seems to want to talk about it at all.

* Meanwhile, Matt Fraction walks away from Twitter.

As recruitment dips, TFA leader says New York training site to close.

* The word you’re looking for is “racism.” Just say “racism.”

The Real Story Of Apollo 17… And Why We Never Went Back To The Moon.

* A Tolkien true believer vs. the nerds.

Hear Philip K. Dick Talk About SF And The Mainstream In 1976.

* Playboy ranks every Star Trek episodes. “Mirror, Mirror” at #3 is a deeply weird choice. And “Arena” at #6 is just insane.

They did a TV movie where the McCallisters get divorced? Pretty dark, Home Alone!

* Portuguese Street Artist Creates Stunning 3D Graffiti That Seems To Float In The Air.

* The Hobbit: A Middle-Earth Workplace.

* Now it’s the Kindle version of Green Planets that has inexplicably gone on deep discount for the weekend, if you’re in the market. And don’t forget to pre-order The Cambridge Companion to American Science Fiction, out in January!

* And they say our society is no longer capable of achieving great things: This scientist solved the mystery of belly button lint.

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