Gerry Canavan

the smartest kid on earth

Posts Tagged ‘Star Wars

Monday Morning Links That *Will* *Not* *Make* *You* *Sad*

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Caroll Spinney, puppeteer who gave life to Big Bird of ‘Sesame Street,’ dies at 85. My own mini Twitter thread. Meanwhile, in the other universe…

Such was the appeal of Big Bird that NASA asked Mr. Spinney to fly into orbit in costume, to interest young people in space exploration. Mr. Spinney agreed to go, but it was ultimately determined that the space shuttle was too small to accommodate the Big Bird suit. A New Hampshire teacher, Christa McAuliffe, went in his stead and was killed along with the rest of the crew when the Challenger shuttle exploded in 1986.

And from the archives…

* Ali Sperling: On Futurity and Futility: Jeff VanderMeer’s Dead Astronauts.

So, what does it mean to fight for a future you know may already be lost? In such a context, questions underlying our relation to futurity become less about whether or not one can maintain hope for a failing planet and its deeply corrupted social and political structures; instead, the novel explores other forms of responses to the problem of the Anthropocene. One could argue that this isn’t a book about any particular future at all; instead, it’s about a present that has already come to pass. For many, there is already no other option but to fight fate, an imperative that suggests the strange paradox that structures both Dead Astronauts and the seemingly impossible political and ecological challenges faced at this moment around the world. The novel suggests that even something broken can be useful: “They had failed in the last City, and the one before that, and the one before that. Sometimes that failure pushed the needle farther. Sometimes that failure changed not a thing. But perhaps one day a certain kind of failure might be enough.”

* CFP: Posthuman Global Symposiums.

* AI Dungeon 2.

* ‘I’m working until I’m 75’: Factory worker describes family’s student debt nightmare.

* The Class of 2000 ‘Could Have Been Anything’: The high school yearbook is a staple of teenage life. But for some, it reflects the devastating toll of the opioid crisis.

* Tinder, but for the master race.

* Why US is still bad for working parents.

It’s not thanks to capitalism that we’re living longer, but progressive politics.

* Biden! Biden! Biden! Buttigieg! And my global take on politics, more or less.

* Service, and sacrifice and heritage.

* “Blackness is a superhero origin story.” The Performative Horniness of Dawn of X.

* Counterpoint: every city, town, village, and hamlet in the United States is a universe unto itself.

* Disney warns Episode 9 may have an epilepsy risk.

* And I too just learned about this letter K.A. Applegate wrote to fans about the end of Animorphs, and it is indeed good.

Liiiiiiiiinks

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* frieze asked me to write them an end-of-decade reflection on franchise culture, so here it is: “Disney’s Endgame: How the Franchise Came to Rule Cinema.” It bounces off the Scorsese brouhaha, but with an eye towards what I see as the key problematic there (monopoly), as opposed to fretting about spectacle or sequels as such. Check it out!

* Had an amazing time doing the keynote at the UC Speculative Futures Collective Symposium on Speculative Futures and Education this week. Look for more from this group soon!

* I was also on the Gribcast podcast talking about Parable of the Talents, something we’d planned for nearly a year before finally making it happen.

* I was elected president of the Science Fiction Research Association last week, too. It’s been weird!

* CFP: Ecopedagogies for the Anthropocene. CFP: Midwestern Science Fiction and Fantasy. CFP: AU: Alternate University.

* The agrocapitalist sublime: The first map of America’s food supply chain is mind-boggling.

These 8 Men Have As Much Money As Half The World.

* Ken Liu in the Times: How Chinese Sci-Fi Conquered America. The China Science Fiction Research Institute.

* ASAP Journal has a cluster on Latinx SF.

Accelerationism: how a fringe philosophy predicted the future we live in. Come for the SF-fueled theory, stay for the celebration of Mark Fisher…

* Now, novelty is to be found in the refusal of communicative capitalism’s false promises of smoothness. If the nineties were defined by the loop (the ‘good’ infinity of the seamlessly looped breakbeat, Goldie’s “Timeless”), then the 21st century is perhaps best captured in the ‘bad’ infinity of the animated GIF, with its stuttering, frustrated temporality, its eerie sense of being caught in a time-trap.

* The humanities in ruins.

My university is dying. And soon yours will be too. The end of Title IX. The other college debt crisis: Schools are going broke. Academe as the Dystopian Workplace. My god, UNC. One of the smartest and most prescient things I’ve read about current higher education was written in 1974, by the great education editor Fred Hechinger, who predicted splitting aid by income would create a “class war over tuition.” -22.8% per student, inflation adjusted. As Universities See State Funding Threatened, Will They Be Less Outspoken About Climate Change? A strike at Harvard. I told my mentor I was a dominatrix.

* 63 Up.

* Are podcasts a disaster waiting to happen?

Was ‘Oumuamua a cosmic dust bunny?

* Farming and the United Federation of Planets.

Climate tipping points — too risky to bet against. Nine climate tipping points now ‘active,’ warn scientists. A Grave Climate Warning, Buried on Black Friday. ‘Bleak’ U.N. Report on a Planet in Peril Looms Over New Climate Talks. Global Warming Prediction Sounds Alarm for Climate Fight. Climate Change Is Accelerating, Bringing World ‘Dangerously Close’ to Irreversible Change. Even 50-year-old climate models correctly predicted global warming. I decided to do a bit of a close read of one particular part of a 1965 report sent to Lyndon Johnson, on atmospheric carbon dioxide. Because I hate myself, you see.

‘It is raining plastic’: Microplastics found in Colorado rainwater. US may face French fry shortage due to poor potato crop: report. Forget ‘developing’ poor countries, it’s time to ‘de-develop’ rich countries. California bans insurers from dropping policies in wildfire zones. Will Buffalo become a climate change haven? Meet Julian Brave NoiseCat – the 26-year-old shaping US climate policy. Exxon and the carbon tax. And what could possibly go wrong? This Bill Gates-funded chemical cloud could help stop global warming. The Failure of the Adults.

* Indict Jair Bolsonaro over indigenous rights, international court is urged.

Border Patrol threw away migrants’ belongings. A janitor saved and photographed them.

* ICE set up a fake university, then arrested 250 people granted student visas. Truly the worst of these cases I’ve seen, no public good rationale whatsoever.

* This gets reported every few months as if it were new or shocking information: DHS never had technology needed to track separated migrant kids.

Inside the Cell Where a Sick 16-Year-Old Boy Died in Border Patrol Care.

* Today in the Forever War.

How “people of color” evolved from a gesture of solidarity and respect to a cover for avoiding the complexities of race.

A staggering one-in-three women, experience physical, sexual abuse.

What is going on? Fears of school shootings hit eight Wisconsin high schools in three days.

* Wisconsin Republicans can completely transform the state’s system of governance on the fly, but the Foxconn deal is sacred writ now and forever.

Trump’s Turkey Corruption Is Way Worse Than You Realize. I predicted Trump would win in 2016 — and I’m predicting the same for 2020. Here’s why liberals don’t understand what he represents. How Trump could lose by 5 million votes and still win in 2020. And it will always get worse: Trump Tells Allies He Wants Absolved War Criminals to Campaign for Him.

If you want to beat Trump, be honest about Biden.

* McKinsey in the news!

* Waiting for Obama. Let’s hang ourselves. The Real Barack Obama Has Finally Revealed Himself.

* Anthony Weiner and the butterfly effect.

* The case for Bernie Sanders.

* ‘A distinctly American phenomenon’: Our workforce is dying faster than any other wealthy country, study shows. It’s Not Just Poor White People Driving a Decline in Life Expectancy. Income inequality in America is the highest it’s been since Census Bureau started tracking it, data shows. Unemployment is low only because ‘involuntary’ part-time work is high. Nearly 700,000 SNAP Recipients Could Lose Benefits Under New Trump Rule. In a small Vermont city: heroin, bullets, and empathy.

* Why Rent Control Works. Highways Give Way to Homes as Cities Rebuild. Against self-driving cars. Today’s Socialist Revival Began on the Streets of Seattle 20 Years Ago. Welcome to the Global Rebellion Against Neoliberalism. Even rich kids need free college.

Millennials weren’t the only ones gutted by the recession. Gen X has never recovered.

* True crime: Indiana manipulated report on Amazon worker’s death to lure HQ2, investigation says. Google fires four employees at center of worker organization efforts. Away’s founders sold a vision of travel and inclusion, but former employees say it masked a toxic work environment. Uber Office Had Separate Bathrooms for Drivers and ‘Employees.’ Uber’s new loan program could trap drivers in cycles of crushing debt. Uber Says 3,045 Sexual Assaults Were Reported in U.S. Rides Last Year.

* “Nearly every Revver who spoke with The Verge said they were exposed to graphic or troubling material on multiple occasions with no warning. This includes recordings of physical and verbal abuse between intimate partners, graphic descriptions of sexual assault, amateur porn, violent footage from police body cameras, a transphobic rant, and, in one instance, “a breast augmentation filmed by a physician’s cell phone, being performed on a patient who was under sedation.” Transcribers for the gig economy service Rev hate the recently slashed rates, but the disturbing content they deal with is even worse.

Watched “The Irishman” and wondered, hey, what happened to those Teamsters pension funds in the end? Turns out that once Rudy Giuliani made a big splash getting the mob out, he handed management over to Wall Street with no oversight, and they wrecked it.

* The final word on should you go to grad school, from 1987.

* But his bosses didn’t like him, so they shot him into space.

* Starlink vs. the stars. Even more here!

Airlines damage or lose an average of 26 wheelchairs a day, report finds.

* What happens after you abandon an entire amusement park?

* You can’t have it both ways.

* This stabs me twice.

* Give it up for Tom Gauld.

* This is a mistake and we should not accept it.

* New book claims Albert Camus was murdered by the KGB.

* The color of the year is… blue. Just — blue.

* Wish I’d been quicker on the blogging trigger to include this Thanksgiving classic in time for the holiday.

* Pretty sick dude. The prequels were close to a good story. I did stand-up last night as “1990s Jerry Seinfeld Doing Bits About His 17-Year-Old Girlfriend.” It Happened to Me: Sinclair Bought My Hometown News Channel and Now It’s Deranged. Bleakest shit I’ve ever seen. The Fire Was Good, Actually. That’s good content. That’s my secret. Inigo Montoya’s Guide to Networking Success. The self care serial killer. Every city has a “guy” they all know about. Give me fucking strength.

Mikhail Gorbachev’s Pizza Hut Thanksgiving Miracle.

* Why Elsa from Frozen is a queer icon — and why Disney won’t embrace that idea.

* The Incendiary Aims of HBO’s Watchmen. HBO’s Watchmen Reveal Unmasks Homophobia and Fetishization. Move over, Joker – it’s time for the OG Superman.

* So the new Ghostbusters sequel follows in the classic franchise legacy mold and is about the original generation of Ghostbusters failing to prevent a disaster that destroyed New York. I really feel like our culture needs some therapy.

* Hands down one of the worst living Americans, virtual lock he’ll be president someday.

* I too can’t wait for December 20th.

* Mark Z. Danielewski drops three new House Of Leaves teleplays, is definitely up to something.

In 1969, a group of boys played a Thanksgiving football game. 50 years later, they’re still at it.

* “There Is An Entity That Cannot Be Defeated”: Former Go champion beaten by DeepMind retires after declaring AI invincible.

* And rest in peace, D.C. Fontana. There’s almost no one more directly responsible for what Star Trek became than her.

Written by gerrycanavan

December 6, 2019 at 2:12 pm

Posted in Look at what I found on the Internet

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*ALL* Your Tuesday Links!

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* CFP: Climates of Crisis: Life, Power, and Planetary Justice in the Capitalocene (Binghamton, 7-8 February 2020). CFP: ASAP/Journal special issue on speculation. CFP: CFP: Caliban no. 63 “Dynamics of Collapse in Fantasy, the Fantastic & SF.” CFP: Extrapolating Nostalgia: Special issue of Science Fiction Studies. CFP: Childhood and Time.

* SFRA Review 330 is out!

Mainstream economists nowadays might not be particularly good at predicting financial crashes, facilitating general prosperity, or coming up with models for preventing climate change, but when it comes to establishing themselves in positions of intellectual authority, unaffected by such failings, their success is unparalleled. One would have to look at the history of religions to find anything like it. To this day, economics continues to be taught not as a story of arguments—not, like any other social science, as a welter of often warring theoretical perspectives—but rather as something more like physics, the gradual realization of universal, unimpeachable mathematical truths.

* I’ve been digging the new Watchmen show, completely despite my own expectations and intentions. I’ve even tweeted about it a few times, in this thread and then once or twice more. A few think pieces after this week’s game-changing episode. which you should see before you read: HBO’s ‘Watchmen’ tackles criminal justice and race, but can’t see past the hero black cop trope. The Timeliness of Watchmen. Watchmen dares to imagine a [SPOILER SPOILER SPOILER]. I like the show so much I even like listening to Struggle Session dunk on it.

The other tweet’s deleted now, but someone pointed out that this is very clearly the brief for the HBO show.

 

Hopepunk and Solarpunk: On Climate Narratives That Go Beyond the Apocalypse.

* The Nearly Forgotten Art of Old Sci-Fi Books.

Sucker bet (a thought experiment).

* Yes we can! Evers signs bill making it a felony to trespass on pipelines.

The latest Keystone Pipeline oil leak is almost 10 times worse than initially thought.

* The Gulf Stream is slowing down. That could mean rising seas and a hotter Florida.

* 82 Days Underwater.

Ramping up Repression as the Australian Continent Burns.

Generation snowflake: Frozen II and the quest for climate justice. Frozen 2’s Bizarre Storyline About Reparations, Explained. Climate Change Is So Real There’s A New Pokémon Based On Dead Coral. “OK boomer” isn’t just about the past. It’s about our apocalyptic future. Wherever a rich person is abusing children — I’ll be there.

Ten Arguments for Open Borders, the Abolition of ICE, and an Internationalist Labor Movement.

The Makah are the only Native Americans with an explicit treaty right to hunt whales, but they have not been allowed to do so for 20 years. A recent proposal could change that.

* Against whale watching.

This Solar Energy Company Fired Its Construction Crew After They Unionized. Brazil Admits It Has a Deforestation Problem and Vows to Fix It. The climate crisis has sparked a Siberian mammoth tusk gold rush. Planes Are Ruining the Planet. New, Mighty Airships Won’t. Climate Change’s Great Lithium Problem. What We Can Learn From the Near-Death of the Banana.

* Big Calculator: How Texas Instruments Monopolized Math Class.

The Education Department for the first time has released earnings data for thousands of college programs at all degree levels. What do they show?

A Recession Is Looming. Even Harvard Is Uncertain About What That Means for Higher Ed. Then Enrollment Fell Off a Cliff: How Beloit College Is Trying to Regain Students. Number of Enrolled International Students Drops. A College Prepares to Close Its Doors as Students and Alumni Mourn — and Scheme.

* The end of the tour: Updated academic job numbers for English Lit (with data scraped from Academic Jobs Wiki). Since last posting on Oct 13th, 88 new TT jobs have been added. But that still leaves us at an all-time low, pretty far into the season. More here.

* The collapse of the profession across all fields.

* Paying for a ‘Toxic’ Postdoc.

‘Brilliant’ Philosophers and ‘Funny’ Psychology Instructors: What a Data-Visualization Tool Tells Us About How Students See Their Professors.

* Watch this story: Indiana University condemns professor’s racist and misogynistic tweets in strongest terms but won’t fire him over views alone.

He Violated Sexual-Misconduct Policy. He’s Back in the Classroom. What Should the University Do Now?

N.J. college professors are fed up. So they are staging a mass protest. Strikes Rock British Universities as Pension Crisis Deepens.

* every academic in the 90s either thought they were going to destroy western rationality by reading books the way some french guy told them to or was terrified that someone else was going to destroy western rationality by reading books the way some french guy told them to

* College Kids Are Not Your Problem.

* Podcast episode that might be interesting for friends in gaming studies or native studies to use in the classroom: “How Did This Get Played? #23: Custer’s Revenge (w/ Joey Clift).” Guest unexpectedly calls out bonkers booking logic that brings a native comedian on to talk about a native-raping and -killing simulator for the Thanksgiving episode.

* Pete Buttigieg Is a Lying MF. Moderate Democrats (Like Pete Buttigieg) Should Stop Pretending That Free College Is a Giveaway to Rich Kids. Stop Blaming Poor People for Their Poverty. Because you demanded it! There’s Only One Way the Patrick and Bloomberg Campaigns Make Sense. Democrats fear a long primary slog could drag into summer. The Corporate Media’s War Against Bernie Sanders Is Very Real. “In Moments of Crisis, Behind Every Moderate Liberal, There’s a Fascist.” When you work extra hard and turn Virginia blue. Why We Confronted Joe Biden on Deportations. Barack Obama, conservative.

* Meanwhile, in the UK.

* Bernie vs. Bernie.

I Don’t Know Why I Should Care What the Constitution Says.

Stop Assuming Republican Senators Will Do the Right Thing. Making Impeachment Matter.

Why Hasn’t Rudy Giuliani Been Disbarred Yet?

* The Atlantic dives in to Joe Biden’s stutter.

* The fall of Nate Silver.

* The Mr. Rogers no one saw. Mister Rogers And The Dark Abyss Of The Adult Soul.

Eurafrica and the myth of African independence.

Nearly All Mass Shooters Since 1966 Have Had 4 Things in Common.

White nationalists are openly operating on Facebook. The company won’t act.

* Leaked Documents Say Roughly 2,000 NY Prisoners Affected By Erroneous Drug Tests. Multiple Illinois prisoners say they have been denied eye surgery because of a “one good eye” policy that only entitles them to have one functioning eye. Half of Wisconsin’s Black Neighborhoods Are Jails. Appalachia vs. the Carceral State. Abolish active shooter drills.

Nation’s Biggest Charity Is Funding Influential White Nationalist Group.

* “Man living in bunker along Milwaukee River may have been there for years.”

Why are people getting worse at “The Price Is Right”? Science investigates.

* Every so often, something happens that is not completely horrible. Humanitarian volunteer Scott Warren reflects on the borderlands and two years of government persecution.

Being a Law Firm Partner Was Once a Job for Life. That Culture Is All but Dead.

* Legalizing same-sex marriage leads to big drop in gay suicide rate. Scientists Have Carried Out the Biggest Ever Study on Transgender Children — Here’s What They Found.

New York City’s best places to cry in public, mapped.

* The aliens are going to be super pissed that we trashed their airport.

* Things have gotten so bad even Alan Moore is voting.

* Autism, anti-vax movements, and the changeling myth.

* Isolation rooms and child abuse in Illinois.

Can the Terminator franchise be saved?

* Amazon’s Lord of the Rings Series Has Already Gotten a Second Season.

* I’m embarrassed how glad I am to hear about this: Star Trek 4 Is Back On, This Time From the Maker of Legion and Fargo.

* This one much less so.

* Abigail De Kosnik on Netflix time vs. fandom time.

The story of Squirrel Girl, told by those who brought her to life.

* The end of the middlebrow.

* Where is that sweet, sweet Baby Yoda plush?

* The Man in the High Castle: Swastikas used in Amazon series ‘proudly destroyed’ after filming.

How NBA executive Jeff David stole $13 million from the Sacramento Kings.

That Uplifting Tweet You Just Shared? A Russian Troll Sent It.

* hot take on the hot take economy

* Tesla tried to have a whistleblower SWATted, arrested, and placed on involuntary mental health hold. WeWork pivots to classification fraud. Consumer DNA Testing May Be the Biggest Health Scam of the Decade. Worker who raised alarm before deadly New Orleans hotel collapse to be deported.

* Former Valley CBP Immigration Officer Facing Possible Deportation.

* Physicists discover evidence of a new force of nature.

* A Blind Man Sees His Birthday Candles Again, Thanks to a Bionic Eye.

Earthquake Conspiracy Theorists Are Wreaking Havoc During Emergencies.

* The Overuse of ‘Emotional Labor’ Turns All Relationships Into Work.

* In a Chaotic World, Dungeons & Dragons Is Resurgent. The Top 10 Fantasy Books That Inspired Modern Dungeons & Dragons.

The 9-year journey to explore each of EVE Online’s 7,805 solar systems.

Thinking about Bowie’s mugshot, which might accidentally be one of the great portraits of the 20th century, and how photographers work their entire lives and will never capture anything as great as some dumbass cop in Rochester.

* I wish I didn’t know about your anus-brain, Flash. Good for you, buddy! What if humans are just adding comments to sloppy code? I’m immortal, it doesn’t even require patience. God that’s bleak.

* You’re not going to believe what I’m about to tell you.

* You’re not going to get away with it.

* statement of teaching philosophy

* How to save money before 40.

* and on the pedestal these words appear

* this isn’t really what twitter is for, but ten years ago today my son died and I basically never talk about it with anyone other than my wife. it’s taken me ten years to realize that I want to talk about it all the time.

* And in your heart, you know it’s canon.

Written by gerrycanavan

November 26, 2019 at 12:45 pm

Posted in Look at what I found on the Internet

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Tuesday Night Links!

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* I have another review at LARB this week, this time on Cixin Liu’s Supernova Era. Check it out!

Now, the humans in Liu’s fictions are not saints: there are always dire moments of backlash, too, moments of denial and cowardice and greed and the familiar madness of crowds refusing to face unpleasant truths. All of his major apocalyptic works thus far translated into English face this sort of ordinary and expected human failing as well. But what reads as genuinely, horrifyingly utopian for us in this moment is Liu’s insistence, across his career, that humanity does in fact want to survive — that, faced with a crisis that upends everything we know and threatens to impoverish and immiserate every human being alive and who will ever be alive, the human race will choose collective life over species death. This remains the most fantastic novum in anything Liu has written, an almost inconceivable shift in the priorities of our elites who, like the traitorous Escapers fleeing the invading Trisolarians in The Three-Body Problem, won’t even pretend to try and save the rest of us. “For more than 30 years, the science has been crystal clear,” a defiant, furious Greta Thunberg recently challenged the United Nations. “How dare you continue to look away, and come here saying that you’re doing enough when the politics and solutions needed are still nowhere in sight?” The adults of Supernova Era got it done in one. In a moment of intergenerational struggle defined by environmental protest groups like Sunrise Movement and Extinction Rebellion, and by the school climate strikes sparked by Thunberg and other young people around the globe, Supernova Era offers a tantalizing glimpse into another universe with an entirely different field of ecological politics, one where parents and grandparents won’t simply let their children and grandchildren suffer and die without a fight.

* And if you thought *I* was hard on The Testaments The Booker Prize — what happened?

* Help make Milwaukee socialist again!

* Do you hear the people sing? Chile’s people have had enough.

* Are Baby Boomers A ‘Generation Of Sociopaths’? Suicide is Gen Z’s second-leading cause of death, and it’s a worse epidemic than anything millennials faced at that age. ‘OK Boomer’ Marks the End of Friendly Generational Relations.

Image and Text #33 is all about Black Panther. Wakanda, Worldbuilding and Afrofuturism for a World Without Violence.

CFP – “Reading Comics at the Threshold.”

The world’s top economists just made the case for why we still need English majors.

Are Liberal Arts Colleges Doomed?

* CUNY Contract Deal Means Big Raise for Adjuncts.

Maryland’s Giant Global Campus Is Restructuring. And Professors Were Asked to ‘Recompete’ for Jobs.

* How Swarthmore shut down the frats.

Trump Education Official to Resign and Call for Mass Student-Loan Forgiveness.

Fredric Jameson: How to adapt to cultural change.

* The rise of eco-horror.

* Every prediction that has been made about climate change has turned out to be a drastic undershoot of the true severity of the crisis. Rising Seas Will Erase More Cities by 2050, New Research Shows.

* Hundred-year wildfires two or three times every week. A ‘high-end and dangerous’ Santa Ana wind event will dramatically escalate California’s fire risk starting Tuesday night. PG&E CEO Says It Could Impose Blackouts in California for a Decade.

* Zeitgeisty!

* The return of MOOCs, this time for climate change. Or because of incredibly poor planning, whatever, the point is MOOCs.

The UN’s Devastating Climate Change Report Was Too Optimistic. Images reveal Iceland’s glacier melt. An unprecedented climate change lawsuit against American oil giant Exxon Mobil is set to go ahead in New York. Kentucky’s Leaders Are Siding With the Coal Industry, and Its Poorest Residents Are Paying a Price. Amazon rainforest ‘close to irreversible tipping point.’ Humans are rapidly turning oceans into warm, acidifying basins hostile to life. US air quality dropped during Trump presidency after years of improvement, leading to thousands of premature deaths. Climate Activism Will Have ‘Terrible Consequences,’ Warn Richest People Alive. ‘Collapse OS’ Is an Open Source Operating System for the Post-Apocalypse. A New Video Game Tests Whether You Can Survive the Climate Apocalypse. How to Halt Global Warming for $300 Billion.

* The end of the Internet. The Real Threat to Journalism Is Not Donald Trump.

* Coca-Cola, no!

* The Great Unraveling.

* No one working at Newsweek can tell me why it still exists.

* Why lowering the voting age would make for a better democracy.

* Today in the scooter scam. You Lost How Much on Scooters? The madness of WeWork. San Francisco is losing residents because it’s too expensive for nearly everyone. Life in a dayspa — with 95 roommates. admin/admin.

Disability activist sues Minneapolis, scooter companies over sidewalk access. A report from the street.

Poor kids spend nearly 2 hours more on screens each day than rich kids.

* School surveillance.

On the Origins of the Professional-Managerial Class: An Interview with Barbara Ehrenreich.

* Welcome to Coffeyville, Kansas, where the judge has no law degree, debt collectors get a cut of the bail, and Americans are watching their lives — and liberty — disappear in the pursuit of medical debt collection.

* UWM study finds over half of gun violence perpetrators and victims had elevated blood lead levels as children. The final five percent.

* How aristocrats ate prestige TV.

* “Bulletproof Emmett Till Memorial Unveiled After Repeated Vandalism.”

* CA 1, NCAA 0.

* An oral history of the Chuck E. Cheese robots.

Hollywood’s New Self-Censorship Mess in China. Quentin Tarantino Holds Firm, Won’t Recut ‘Once Upon a Time’ for China.

* Biden’s just so bad at this. So bad at this! Bartenders for Bernie. Can Elizabeth Warren win it all?

* This is fine: In court hearing, Trump lawyer argues a sitting president would be immune from prosecution even if he were to shoot someone. Impeachment is too important to leave to Congress — it’s going to take mass mobilization. John Roberts will save us!

* Being President Supervillain.

Criminal misconduct by US border officers has reached a 5-year high.

* Taking the fight to every state.

* The recession returns to Wisconsin, which it never really left in the first place. Save me, Foxconn!

HUD officials knowingly failed ‘to comply with the law,’ stalled Puerto Rico hurricane relief funds.

* In the richest country in human history.

* Life in occupied Kashmir.

The Empire of Patrolmen.

* Orcs, Britons, And The Martial Race Myth, Part I: A Species Built For Racial Terror. I have an entire day in my Tolkien class devoted to this question, around the Gorbag/Shagrat passages in TTT and ROTK, just because it’s such a threat to the pleasure of the fantasy by the end of the semester.

* Tolkien’s lessons for Trump.

* Of course Mordor would be in Florida.

* The Evolution of Dragons in Western Literature: A History.

* The Fallen Worlds of Philip Pullman.

* Fantasy literature alignment chart.

* Benioff and Weiss explain at length how they don’t know anything about making shows. Five seconds later: David Benioff & D.B. Weiss Are No Longer Making Star Wars Movies.

* The Supreme Court Doesn’t Understand Transgender People. Its ignorance could lead to a legal catastrophe.

* Sphinx of black quartz, judge my vow!

* There’s a very good chance the government isn’t hiding aliens. I can’t believe they even got to Snowden.

Mass. Dem’s Bill Would Make It Illegal To Call Someone ‘Bitch.’

Hunt told the Boston Herald that he filed the bill after being asked to do so by a constituent. “Any time a constituent approaches me with something that is of concern to them, I follow through with it,” he said. “In this instance, someone asked me to file a bill that they deemed was important and I thought it was a good exercise to let that bill go through the process.”

I think I’ve found the one flaw in your legislative strategy.

* Can’t get good help these days: Hitman hires hitman who hires hitman who hires hitman who hires hitman who tells police.

Can You Really Be Addicted to Video Games?

* How YouTube radicalization works.

* We Are All Clowns: A Defense of Joker.

Disney Is Quietly Placing Classic Fox Movies Into Its Vault, and That’s Worrying.

* In honor of the return of Homestuck: How ‘Homestuck’ Defined What It Means to Be a Fan Online.

* The Evil Dead Cabin (Morristown, TN).

My Daughter and I Were Diagnosed With Autism on the Same Day.

* If we can put a man on the moon. Media and and social class: a guide. Scams. Dreams.

* One-page dungeon.

* Which words were first recorded in print the year you were born?

The 2010s Broke Our Sense Of Time.

* Ian Bogost wants that goose off his lawn.

* The origins of Kirby.

* We did it! U.S. Military Will Stop Using Floppy Disks to Operate Its Nuclear Weapons System.

* 271 Years Before Pantone, an Artist Mixed and Described Every Color Imaginable in an 800-Page Book.

* Nothing gold can stay.

* And imagine going back in time.

Written by gerrycanavan

October 29, 2019 at 4:51 pm

Posted in Look at what I found on the Internet

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Thursday Night Links!

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* CFP: The 9th Biennial Slayage Conference on the Whedonverse. CFP: Horror(s) of Childhood and Adolescence. CFP: Trans Futurisms. CFP: Critical Comics Studies. And CFP coming soon: The X-Men Animated Series.

Depictions of death on TV and in the movies are unrealistic; the characters are awake and carry on meaningful conversations, then suddenly close their eyes and die. That’s not how it works. In the days when deaths occurred at home, most people had seen a relative die. And today we have a lot of knowledge about what happens in the body as it begins shutting down.

* Almost micro-targeted to my mental illness: How many US cities can you name?

What Fan Fiction Teaches That the Classroom Doesn’t.

* So much of college administration is rule by decree under the sign of emergency.

California Governor Signs Bill Allowing College Athletes To Profit From Endorsements. Free labor from college athletes may soon come to an end. And please don’t worry: Ending the sham of NCAA amateurism will not end Title IX.

* Here come the esports majors.

* The Cult of Rich-Kid Sports.

Anatomy of a Polite Revolt in Columbia’s English Department. Reckon it could probably stand to be a little less polite.

* My university is dying.

Former College Towns Left to Adapt to Business Loss.

* The inaugural issue of our journal Gothic Nature: New Directions in Ecohorror and the EcoGothic is finally live.

* Earth is a fire planet, the only one we know.

Humans Are Disturbing Earth’s Carbon Cycle More Than the Dinosaur-Killing Asteroid Did.

First as Tragedy, Then as Fascism: Ecologist Garrett Hardin’s enduring gift to the nativist right. The Delusion and Danger of Infinite Economic Growth. Now That’s What I Call the Anthropocene™!

What If We Really Are Alone in the Universe?

* ‘Sci-fi makes you stupid’ study refuted by scientists behind original research.

* Amber Guyger found guilty of murder at trial in fatal shooting of neighbor Botham Jean.

* The toll of #MeToo.

* This time they can’t use procedural tricks to stymie the march of progress! *five seconds later* Ah, well, nevertheless.

The Week That Everything Changed. Paralyzed and teetering on the edge of a cliff. High on His Own Supply. Crazy. Shoot Migrants’ Legs, Build Alligator Moat: Behind Trump’s Ideas for Border. Government Plans to Begin DNA Testing on Detained Immigrants. Trump Administration Separates Some Migrant Mothers From Their Newborns Before Returning Them to Detention. After two ICE officers came to a Pacific Northwest community, longtime residents began to disappear. Will Trump ever leave the White House? The only way out of this catastrophe is for everyone on both sides to pretend Pence isn’t completely dirty even though he very obviously is. President Pence’s First and Worst Choice.

 

* Somehow Elizabeth Warren keeps attracting the right enemies. Warren’s plan for workers. Warren and the selfie line.

How Bernie Sanders convinced me about free college.

* Snowden in the Labyrinth.

* John Kelly, man of honor.

“shoddy system backed by extremely shoddy research and jackboot instincts should be applied globally”

* WeWork is really shaping up to be the Enron of our moment, narrowly edging out Uber.

The Enduring Myth of “The Economy.”

* The Boeing whistleblower.

* Welcome to Estonia’s Isle of Women.

* How they teach slavery, then and now.

* Turns out you can say something so stupid you get fired from Fox.

The Supreme Court will hear three cases next Tuesday that ask whether it is legal to fire workers because of their sexual orientation or gender identity. That alone is enough to make them three of the most important employment discrimination cases in many years. But there are additional layers to these cases, layers that could imperil all workers regardless of whether or not they are LGBTQ.

* I suppose this is canon (again).

* Martin Scorsese and Quentin Tarantino in conversation.

Star Trek: Discovery Became The Most Popular Streaming Show In The World.

* The His Dark Materials sequel is here: The Secret Commonwealth.

Why Has Transphobia Gone Mainstream in Philosophy?

Five Years Later, Do Black Lives Matter?

* Is it weird that no one can sustain a media operation of any size no matter what the topic or longevity?

More than 30,000 children under age 10 have been arrested in the US since 2013: FBI. Hard at work to double that number by 2025.

* Absolutely psychotic nation.

* Great country. Truly great.

* Only in America!

* When your industry is so racist you have no choice but to level up.

* Superheroes are real.

* get you a man who can do all three

* Food mascots and whether or not I’d be able to kick their ass.

* A cultural history of an incredibly self-referential tweet.

* Don’t vape!

Stop Getting Married On Plantations!

* america.jpg

* This one is a real america.jpg too.

* america.jpgs all over.

* Nothing gold can stay: the end of BoJack Horseman.

He Spent Years Infiltrating White Supremacist Groups. Here’s What He Has to Say About What’s Going on Now.

* Tor.com takes up one of my favorite elements of the Foundation series, the Encyclopedia Galactica.

* And I feel like this is worth at least two weeks of therapy.


Written by gerrycanavan

October 3, 2019 at 5:02 pm

Posted in Look at what I found on the Internet

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The Return of Sunday Reading! Just Kidding!

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* I have a short piece on resistance to automation in the forum of the new issue of ASAP/Journal. Check it out!

* I’m really stunned to see that the Tiptree Award is on the verge of being renamed. The details of the end of her and her husband’s life are definitely troubling — but decanonizing Tiptree over this single ambiguous incident at the end of her life seems to me to be of a completely different order than the Campbell or the Lovecraft renamings, where the entire body of creative output is being reevaluated.

Faith in science fiction and fantasy.

64% of Americans support labor unions but membership is at a record low.

In academia we need unions more than ever—whether one is an adjunct or tenure track. Our higher education system is being hollowed out by administrators who see institutions of learning as businesses, and are making money at students’ & workers’ expense.

How Far Does Your Tuition Dollar Go?

Marquette University

This institution spends $0.49 on instruction for every dollar it collects in tuition.

This is a Private Nonprofit Four-Year College, University, and/or Professional School and the tuition collected per full-time student or equivalent is $22,584.

How does this school stack up?

The average public institution spends $1.42 on instruction for every dollar collected in tuition.

The average private nonprofit institution spends $0.84 on instruction for every dollar collected in tuition.

The average for-profit institution spends $0.29 on instruction for every dollar collected in tuition.

* A Brief History of Academic Mysteries, Campus Thrillers, and Research Noir.

Inside the African essay factories that churn out university coursework for 115,000 cheating British students every year.

Meritocracy Is Killing High-School Sports.

Adjunct Faculty in an Adjunct Country. Beatriz Llenín Figueroa on the situation at the University of Puerto Rico.

* Syllabus: Critical Algorithm Studies.

* Dialectics of the new Popeye’s chicken sandwich. Panera is losing nearly 100% of its workers every year as fast-food turnover crisis worsens. Waffle House has an official poet laureate.

Amazon Is Looking More and More Like a Nation-State. Amazon is lying about Ring and facial recognition. Amazon’s Next-Day Delivery System Has Brought Chaos And Carnage To America’s Streets — But The World’s Biggest Retailer Has A System To Escape The Blame.

* YouTube reinstated these extremist and white nationalist channels, apologized to them.

* How 9 People Built an Illegal $5M Airbnb Empire in New York.

* The Plan to Use Fitbit Data to Stop Mass Shootings Is One of the Scariest Proposals Yet.

* “Hey, Google! Let me talk to my departed father.”

Twitter’s promise vs. Twitter’s reality.

Immigration panic: how the west fell for manufactured rage. Trump administration seeks to deport children with life-threatening illnesses.

It Is Very Bad That Our President Reportedly Lied About Trade Negotiations With China. Let’s Compare Donald Trump’s Week to the Impeachment Articles Brought Against Nixon, Clinton, and Johnson.

* There’s no FEC anymore. There’s not really an NLRB, either.

Dear America, universal health care is what real freedom looks like.

How Slavery Shaped American Capitalism.

Capitalism Is Making Us Sick: A Q&A With Emily Guendelsberger About Her New Book, On the Clock.

7 ‘Left Wing’ Ideas (Almost) All Americans Can Get Behind.

Liberalism in Theory and Practice.

* The Children’s Crusade: This Colorado charter school is teaching 6th graders how to fight back against shooters.

* Well guys, I’m about to walk out the TNR office doors for the last time. But before I do, I want to share some hard truths about climate change I’ve learned in the last 2.5 yrs reporting here.

North Carolina’s Climate Change Blind Spots Make Dorian More Dangerous. Rising seas ‘could displace 280m people,’ draft UN report warns. New Miami Hurricane Hazard: Dockless Scooters as Projectiles.

* On pregnancy in the Anthropocene.

* The Climate Trail.

How to Win Wisconsin. And elsewhere on the Wisconsin beat: Wisconsin workers embedded with microchips.

* The rape charges were dropped because the victim’s credibility was “seriously, seriously questionable” and the charges could not be proved beyond reasonable doubt, said Justice Danny Chun. The agreed-upon facts are inarguably rape.

* Meanwhile, a Maryland teen has been labeled a child pornographer for sharing a video of her own sex act.

* Good news: Sacklers could hold on to most of personal fortune in proposed Purdue settlement.

* On the greatness of Peanuts (when it was good).

* In the age of the psychonauts.

* “It’s time to talk about James Mattis’s involvement with the Theranos scandal. He’s selling a book, not saving the country from Trump.”

* “Brain-reading tech is coming. The law is not ready to protect us.”

* First is third. Second is first. Third is second.

The Longest Walkable Distance on Earth.

* Here’s a thing that no one asked for but that I think we all need: the style guide alignment chart.

* Compulsory homosexuality in Ireland! Marxist-lesbianism is the state ideology!

* DeepMind Can Now Beat Us at Multiplayer Games, Too.

* Dicey Dungeons rules.

* The Slinky was invented by accident.

* Jordan Peele drops a surprise flick.

Donald was the first child ever diagnosed with autism. Identified in the annals of autism as “Case 1 … Donald T,” he is the initial subject described in a 1943 medical article that announced the discovery of a condition unlike “anything reported so far,” the complex neurological ailment now most often called an autism spectrum disorder, or ASD. At the time, the condition was considered exceedingly rare, limited to Donald and 10 other children—Cases 2 through 11—also cited in that first article.

* On precocious puberty, the hell you didn’t even know was possible.

* Sing to me, muse, of the man of twists and turns…

* My five-alarm-fire Star Wars 9 and Notorious RBG predictions, for the record.

* We’re all rooting for you, sweetie.

* And science has finally found the secret to happiness.

Written by gerrycanavan

September 1, 2019 at 9:17 am

Posted in Look at what I found on the Internet

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Tuesday Links, Plus a Very Canavan Podcast!

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There’s No Sheriff on This Planet: A Conversation with Kim Stanley Robinson. The latest in my irregular series of conversations with KSR. The transcript is just the highlights — for the full effect you’ll have to listen.

* Extrapolation 60.1 is out! Articles on rape motifs in contemporary fantasy, Japanese print SF, and Nihād Sharīf’s The Conqueror of Time.

* Endgame ephemera! Avengers: Endgame, or, why this is all your fault. Avengers and the Endgame of Liberalism. And the Russo brothers are on a quest to make sure you know that Endgame being good had nothing to do with them.

* The Night King? Never happened. It will shock you how much it never happened. Bonus appearance by the coffee cup! If these are the final two choices, the only way to win the Game may be not to play.

* “Like Groundhog Day — and while we’re at it, like The Good Place — Russian Doll is Kafka played on easy mode.”

* Watch The Wandering Earth on Netflix!

* Ted Chiang has a new book, why haven’t you bought it yet?

* A new climate change story from Paolo Bacigalupi at MIT Technology Review. Killer ending.

* Human society under urgent threat from loss of Earth’s natural life. One million species at risk of extinction, UN report warns. Humans Are Speeding Extinction and Altering the Natural World at an ‘Unprecedented’ Pace. An open letter to David Wallace-Wells. We are ruled by psychopaths.

* Greta Thunberg, autism, and climate activism.

* For roughly 18 months, AirPods play music, or podcasts, or make phone calls. Then the lithium-ion batteries will stop holding much of a charge, and the AirPods will slowly become unusable. They can’t be repaired because they’re glued together. They can’t be thrown out, or else the lithium-ion battery may start a fire in the garbage compactor. They can’t be easily recycled, because there’s no safe way to separate the lithium-ion battery from the plastic shell. Instead, the AirPods sit in your drawer forever. AirPods Are a Tragedy.

It’s time to speak about batshit jobs.

Today, batshit jobs are more widespread than ever. You’re likely doing a batship job if you’re working in advertising trying to maintain mass consumption, in air traffic, industrial farming and forestry, in mining, in the car industry, and first of all if you’re working in oil drilling, fracking, coal mining.

To become dilligent batshit workers we have to be trained, and we have to be able to block out the harm that our work participates in. The beauty of the school strikes is that a generation of young people are preparing themselves to refuse batshit work.

*  It seems to me that anyone who considers this for more than ten minutes has to recognize that “student demand” is a construct: it is the product of a pervasive, cross-institutional pedagogy in social and educational value in which students are immersed from (at least) primary school onward.  If students are demanding STEM in record numbers, this is a because they have been systematically invited to embrace a number of interlocking beliefs: that

  1. STEM fields matter to the welfare and future of human societies more than other fields — that social problems respond best to technocratic solutions; 
  2. college is a course of career training; 
  3. college is an investment that ought to be maximized in order to yield the highest possible return in the form of lifelong higher income;
  4. STEM fields represent areas of continuing high-growth, recession-proof employment. 

“Student demand” is a fact insofar as it reproduces these assumptions, which are already endemic to the privatized, market-driven university.  Other forms of “student demand” (for example, demands for a more racially and ethnically diverse faculty that better reflects regional and national demographics) are routinely ignored.

* Marquette Academic Senate calls for administration neutrality on unionization.

* Measuring the tenure-track success of pre-2009 Ph.D.s is like measuring the ice stability of Greenland’s glaciers before industrialization. Researcher’s suicide reflects bleak prospects for post-Ph.D. life. Adjuncts and Freelancers: Reading Signs of Eventual Destruction.

* Turning Point USA’s dark coup on college campuses.

A lot of older academics will point to the 1970s or the 1990s to say that crisis has always been the default, and there’s truth to this. But they didn’t have the same debt loads back then.

* “Second Chance: Life without Student Debt.”

* For Colleges, Climate Change Means Making Tough Choices.

* People Are Clamoring to Buy Old Insulin Pumps.

What Happened After My 13-Year-Old Son Joined the Alt-Right. As capitalism starts to crumble, hate finds a familiar foothold.

Liberalism: the other God that failed. The Senate is a much bigger problem than the Electoral College. Here’s how many millennials get help from their parents to pay rent and other bills. Twitter users answer the question: “When did you become radicalized by the U.S. health care non-system?” 42% of Americans are at risk of retiring broke.

* America smartly sets its sights on the one flaw in the Constitution the Founders actually bothered to fix.

* If the president does it, it’s not obstruction.

* This seems heathy. This too! Things are great.

The forgotten history of how Abraham Lincoln helped rig the Senate for Republicans.

* Dialectics of Milwaukee: ‘It’s clear that the secret is out about Milwaukee,’ increased tourism spending shows. There seems to be a surge of unsettling things happening on the Milwaukee education landscape, some of them just more of the same (low student achievement, divisive politics) and some of them not so typical (corruption). Glendale would provide $37 million to help redevelop struggling Bayshore — with $57 million debt paid off.

Sandra Bland, It Turns Out, Recorded Her Own Video of Traffic Stop Confrontation. ICE provides local police a way to work around ‘sanctuary’ policies, act as immigration officers.

* On April 30, my Liberal Studies class, framed as Anthropology and Philosophy of Science, was the site of a horrific event. Two of my students were killed while four more were injured.

Study: Therapy dogs reduce children’s fear, anxiety during dentist appointments.

Aging baby boomers are about to push Alzheimer’s disease rates sky high.

The Saga Of ‘Star Citizen,’ A Video Game That Raised $300 Million—But May Never Be Ready To Play.

* Dystopia watch: Oh Good, a Subway System Is Making Riders Stare at Ads Before They Can Buy a Ticket. Amazon’s staffing up a news vertical full of crime stories designed to scare you into buying a spying, snitching “smart” doorbell. We’ve lived so long that the founding of Amazon Prime is something we can be nostalgic about now.

* Let’s just go with a daily reminder that Philip K. Dick wrote a novel where all films were just called disneys.

* Who Owns the Moon Watch: Why the Moon Is Suddenly a Hot Commodity.

* How angry pilots got the Navy to stop dismissing UFO sightings.

* And the biggest danger about an asteroid strike? Lawyers.

Written by gerrycanavan

May 7, 2019 at 12:31 pm

Posted in Look at what I found on the Internet

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