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[links] Link salad doesn’t fly to England today

How Does that Steak Frites Happen?

Computing Power Used to Be Measured in ‘Kilo-Girls’ The earliest computers were human. And, more often than not, female. (Via Daily Idioms, Annotated.)

A CT scanner with its covers off at full speed — Wow. I stick my head in this every two months? (Via [info]willyumtx.)

Meeting Set On Iraq Veteran’s SpongeBob Gravestone — A strange headline for a very sad story.

Long-sought pattern of ancient light detected

Smog Shuts Down Harbin

US carbon emissions hit lowest level since 1994 despite economic growthEfficiency, drop in manufacturing, and a shift to natural gas all contribute.

Textbook publishers ignoring Texas school board’s inane interventions — Conservatives: eternally dedicated to miseducating their children and yours to build a weaker future for America.

The Selective Amnesia Of Postwar EuropeThoughts on Tony Judt’s Postwar. Ta-Nehisi Coates, with some obvious parallels to the conservative American view of the Confederacy.

The Pope is a Model PoliticianFour practical lessons from the pontiff for our hopeless, howling wreck of a Congress

The End of HypocrisyAmerican Foreign Policy in the Age of Leaks.

355,000 Facebook users share conspiracy that Obamacare will install microchips in Americans — Why has “conservative” become synonymous with “too stupid to live”?

Consumer Reports: Obamacare Opponents ‘Misrepresented’ Us On Website — What do you know? Conservatives lying about Obamacare. Good thing that whole “Thou shalt not bear false witness” thing doesn’t apply to Republicans.

The newest front in battle over health-care law: Who gets a briefing?House Republicans are now upset they’re not getting a closed-door briefing on the law’s implementation, so they can rake Health and Human Services officials over the coals for the online enrollment system’s problems.

John Roberts And Obama Face Off Over Campaign Finance — AgainThe chief justice is protective of the court’s reputation and tends to prefer incremental conservative changes to sweeping shifts. Roberts? In what fucking universe? The only reason the Chief Justice isn’t universally understood as a right wing ideologue who’s abandoned all intellectually honest jurisprudence and Constitutionality in favor of naked partisanship is that he sits next to Justices Scalia and Thomas. Those two ass clowns make Joe McCarthy look like a model of prudent bipartisanship. History is going to be very, very unkind to the Roberts Court, unless of course it’s written by Palinites. Which is clearly Roberts’ goal.

?otD: Who are you?


10/23/2013
Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo brain)
Hours slept: 6.0 hours (solid)
Body movement: 30 minute stationary bike ride
Weight: 241.0
Number of FEMA troops on my block forcing children to learn critical thinking: 0
Currently reading: n/a (chemo brain)

[links] Link salad wishes the Child a Happy Birthday

Unusable Words — Auto-antonyms and other peccadilloes of the English language. (Via Slacktivist Fred Clark.)

A Tale of Two Drugs — How ultra high priced pharmaceuticals work in the market. For comparison, my core cancer drug costs $116,400 per year, face value before carrier contracts and discounting.

Hitchhiking virus confirms saga of ancient human migration

Ghost advertising on old buildings — There used to be more of these in Portland, but they’ve been slowly disappearing.

Burlesque Dancer Twerks To Beethoven, Which Is As Amazing As It Sounds — Because reasons! (Via David Goldman.)

George Washington University misrepresented admissions and financial aid policy for yearsThe University admitted publicly for the first time Friday that it puts hundreds of undergraduate applicants on its waitlist each year because they cannot pay GW’s tuition. Administrators now say the admissions process has always factored in financial need. But that contradicts messaging from the admissions and financial aid offices that, as recently as Saturday, have regularly attested that the University remained need-blind. Classy. Very classy.

Goblin Toppler Files Personal Injury Lawsuit Prior to Incident — So one of those “real American” Utah vandals is also a lawsuit cheat? I wonder what he thinks of people who receive welfare or food stamps. (Via [info]threeoutside.)

How much warming does new IPCC report see in our future?Understanding how the report’s projections are generated and what they tell us. Amazing what you learn about the world when you listen to reality instead of ideology.

One Big Problem With Heritage’s New Obamacare StudyThe conservative Heritage Foundation released last week a new report on insurance premiums under Obamacare, and the conclusion was that favorite of conservative talking points: people are going to pay more for insurance under Obamacare. Only the foundation left out one key variable in the equation, one that undermines their conclusion that “individuals in most states will end up spending more on the exchanges.” As always with conservatives, they cannot win the on the merits, so they flat out lie. It’s a good strategy for them, because people remember the lie, not the later mumbled retraction, if it even ever occurs.

Inhofe: Obamacare would have killed me because of ‘my age’ — So if this is news, how come the media doesn’t report on the thousands of people like me who would be dead if the GOP got its way and repealed Obamacare? The ACA’s lifting of spending caps is what has kept me in treatment at all. Not only that, Inhofe is either lying about how Obamacare works or seriously confused. Given that he’s a Republican, I know which one I believe.

The real reason that 500,000 people died in Iraq — This comment from the Bush White House will make you ashamed to be an American, and a human being. Unless you’re a Republican, in which case you’ll likely approve, just like you have all along.

How Texas’ Voter ID Laws Affect WomenSusan B. Anthony once said, “No self-respecting woman would wish or work for the success of a party which ignores her political rights.” It’s times like these that one has to wonder how there can be a single woman left supporting the Republican Party as it goes out of its way to deny minorities and women their constitutional rights.

Texas Judge Quits GOP Over Social Issues, ShutdownAs the smallest minds continue to make the loudest noise in the Republican Party, true leaders will be driven by their principles and values to become Texas Democrats,” he said in the statement. Wow is that well put. America surely needs a conservative party for the sake of political balance, but not the Christianist, hate-fueled, reality-denying freakshow that the GOP has become. (For that matter, American needs a liberal party, too. The current Democrats are essentially Richard Nixon’s GOP, and everyone else in the political mainstream has run to the right: that redefinition of the political center is the ultimate victory of Ronald Reagan, and the ultimate punishment this country has had to endure for the sake of the senile old fraud’s success.)

?otD: How old are you today?


10/22/2013
Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo brain)
Hours slept: 7.75 hours (solid)
Body movement: 30 minute stationary bike ride
Weight: 241.0
Number of FEMA troops on my block reopening National Parks: 0
Currently reading: n/a (chemo brain)

[links] Link salad tries to remember that time in September

Languages: Crowd-Sourced Online Nouchi Dictionary — (Via Daily Idioms, Annotated.)

Technology and the College Generation — (Via my Dad.)

Helmet Camera Captures Firefighter Bringing A Tiny Kitten Back To Life — Awww. (Via David Goldman.)

Snobbish photons forced to pair up and get heavyBizarre state of matter causes photons to be attracted to each other. Headline is goofy, story is cool.

Star Dunes in Algeria — This is a pretty cool image.

Experts set threshold for climate-change calamity Researchers say an emissions tipping point for the planet may be 25 years away.

Our Shared Humanity: Connecting the Death of an 83 Year Old White Female College Adjunct With the Shooting Death of an Unarmed Black Man Named Jonathan Ferrell — Adjunct professors have a hard life. (Via [info]threeoutside.)

Broken Windows, Broken States I hesitate to state it so baldly because inevitably it cuts off the discussion with at least a sizable minority of the political nation. But there’s no way to grapple with the issue without being clear on this single underlying reality. Sufficient evidence of this comes from 2007 and 2008 when Democrats won resounding majorities in Congress and adopted exactly none of these tactics with an already quite unpopular President Bush.

?otD: WHen were you young?


9/29/2013
Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo brain)
Hours slept: 7.5 hours (solid)
Body movement: 30 minute stationary bike ride
Weight: 242.2
Number of FEMA troops on my block implementing Kenyan Muslim socialism through stock market growth and economic recovery: 0
Currently reading: n/a (chemo brain)

[links] Link salad may be right, it may be crazy

Changing The Creepy Guy Narrative — Wow. One person at a time. (Via MF.)

New smart knife for tumor operations “sniffs” out cancer

Kickstarter Campaign Wants to Send Tiny Satellites out of Earth OrbitResearchers have launched a crowdfunding campaign for a propulsion system that could send loaf-sized satellites on interplanetary voyages.

A Low-Tech Mosquito Deterrent — Cool. (Via David Goldman.)

Secret of Bees’ Honeycomb Revealed — Also, How honeycombs can build themselves. (Via David Goldman.)

Nikola Tesla’s remote-control boat, and other unpopular inventions

GPS Reveals Hurricane Wind SpeedsGPS signals tell a lot about how fast the wind is blowing during a hurricane.

USDA Requires Magician to Create “Disaster Plan” for His Rabbit — U… wow…

The Haunting Melody of Global Warming

Howard Morgan, Black Off-Duty Cop Shot 28 Times By White Chicago Officers, Faces Sentencing — Nope, no racism here. (Via [info]danjite.)

GOP Lawmaker In Utah Wants To End Compulsory Education In The State — Are you proud of your Republican party?

Dear Republicans. This Is Your Problem. — Charlie Pierce on Liz Cheney’s senate run. Except it isn’t a GOP problem. The entire country suffers badly from the GOP’s toxic dysfunctionality.

QotD?: Am I the lunatic you’re looking for?


7/18/2013
Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo brain)
Hours slept: 6.25 hours (solid)
Body movement: 0.0 hours (away from home)
Weight: n/a (away from home)
Number of FEMA troops on my block supplying black kids with Skittles: 0
Currently reading: Real Happiness: The Power of Meditation: A 28-Day Program by Sharon Salzberg; Leviathan Wakes by James S.A. Corey

[links] Link salad is the heavy-handed gent who ran amok in Kent

Reading Notes: “The Stars Do Not Lie” — A mixed review of my Hugo- and Nebula-nominated novella.

2013 stories 151 – 159 — A review of, among other things, my short story “The Future by Degrees”, all from Seeds of Change.

The Lovely Mr. Gaiman — A despatch from Friday night’s Clarion West party.

JayWake Registration OpensFile 770 covers the forthcoming terminal festivities.

I Just Can’t Process My Own Death — Ferrett Steinmetz with some serious thinking about mortality.

The Atlantic In Paris–Dispatch #1 — Ta-Nehisi Coats with an admirable meditation on privilege, luck and going to Paris with his family.

Epic Superhero Art in a Traditional Native American Style — (Thanks to [info]corwynofamber.)

Putnam County Sheriff’s Office: 3 men towed, rode 600-lb. aluminum chickenThree men were arrested Wednesday in Putnam County for stealing a 9-foot-tall chicken statue. (Via [info]danjite.)

Zoologger: Hipster toad has weaponised moustache — Because headlines! (Via [info]threeoutside.)

Agriculture arose in many parts of the Fertile Crescent at once

Improving 3-D Printing by Copying NatureBiomimicry could make the technology safer and better.

First look: Google Glass unboxing, setup, and first impressions — I would love to work with Google Glass, but even if I somehow got hold of it, unless they can be configured with prescription lenses, they’re useless to me. I can’t wear contacts, and I can’t go without vision correction.

Astronomers remain puzzled by mysterious intergalactic radio bursts

Climate Scientist Michael Mann Sums Up the Witch Hunt Against HimBut the “enraging” part is still there—that duly-elected public officials would waste so much time, effort, and tax dollars on witch hunts like these is galling, amplified even more so by the import and stakes involved. If this were a real controversy I would enthusiastically support investigations; but the evidence is in, and it’s clear these attacks are without merit and just politically driven. The GOP battlecry: “Millions for pointless political witch hunts to keep our white, male voters angry; not one cent for social services that might benefit likely Democratic voters!”

New Living Word removed from Louisiana Scholarship Program — Huh. Conservative Christians cheating the government on a wholesale basis. Guess those Commandments about theft and false witness don’t apply when there’s public money to be pocketed. It is obvious from their behavior and rhetoric that to many American Christians the Ten Commandments are not nearly so important as God’s inviolate word on homosexuality, for example. No wonder people think us atheists can’t have a moral compass. Not when we lack this kind of moral leadership.

Sound Familiar?Can we think of some Americans who view secular, rational thinking as contrary to God’s Will? Who seem to be in an extended revolt against modernity? Who have a fixed, rigid notion of how society ought to operate, rooted deeply in an imagined Golden Age? Who want to utilize democratic processes to impose a system that brooks no compromise or “relativistic” adjustments to changing circumstances, but instead reflects an order dictated by natural and divine law, and the nation’s “true” character?

Gay Marriage Stirs Rebellion at Synagogue — Sadly, there are religious bigots everywhere. History is leaving them all behind.

Restrictive law could force most Texas abortion clinics to close — Ask any Republican about Obamacare, and they’ll tell you, “Don’t let the government come between me and my doctor.” I’m so glad to see the Texas GOP is upholding this core conservative value.

For Islamists, Dire Lessons on Politics and Power

Venezuela’s Maduro: Unlike US Asylees, Snowden didn’t Blow anything Up, just said ‘This is not Right’

How the Pentagon Papers Came to Be Published by the Beacon Press, Told by Daniel Ellsberg and Others — Oh, how times have changed. (Via David Goldman.)

A Bad Dream — Charlie Stross on the politics of democracy in the contemporary UK. Fascinating.

QotD?: What have you overheard in Mayfair lately?


7/7/2013
Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (vacation)
Hours slept: 9.5 hours (solid)
Body movement: 0.0 hours (away from home)
Weight: n/a (away from home)
Number of FEMA troops on my block building mandatory gay marriage halls: 0
Currently reading: Real Happiness: The Power of Meditation: A 28-Day Program by Sharon Salzberg; Snuff by Terry Pratchett

[links] Link salad takes its place with the lord of the hills

The Adjustable Cosmos — An animated short film with certain affinities to my Mainspring trilogy. (Via [info]bedii.)

Early stop-motion with real insect characters — Uh…

Watch A Robotic Cheetah-Cub Run

Materials Scientists Build Chlorophyll-based Phototransistor

The Faulty Logic of the ‘Math Wars’

Global Attitudes toward HomosexualityGenerally, the more religious a country, the less accepting its citizens are of homosexuality: Ah, the magical link between bigotry and faith.

IRS scandal: Is partisanship overshadowing facts? — Is the sky blue? Is water wet? When you have one party explicitly dedicated to inventing its own facts regardless of objective reality, then by definition partisanship overshadows.

QotD?: Are you in neat little rows sporting canvas frills?


6/18/2013
Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (restoring dead computer)
Hours slept: 6.5 hours (solid)
Body movement: 0.5 hours (stationary bike)
Weight: 247.8
Number of FEMA troops on my block installing Islamic footwashing sinks: 0
Currently reading: Real Happiness: The Power of Meditation: A 28-Day Program by Sharon Salzberg; Unseen Academicals by Terry Pratchett

[links] Link salad dreams of electric sheep

Science and Technology Knowledge QuizYou answered 13 of 13 questions correctly. […] You scored better than 93% of the public and the same as 7%. As I said in comments on [info]james_nicoll‘s LiveJournal post about this, “One question I actually had to think about for a moment, the rest were general knowledge on a par with knowing the points of the compass or how to conjugate an English verb.”

Hundreds of Potential Drug Targets to Starve Cancer Tumors Identified — Huh. (Thanks to Bruce Taylor.)

Physicists Build World’s First “Magnetic Hose” For Transmitting Magnetic FieldsMagnetic fields decay rapidly and so have never been transmitted over long distances. Until now… I initially misread this headline as “Magnetic Horse”, which would be a lot funnier.

The Scientific Process Through Stock Photography — Hahah! I love nerd humor. (Via Gabrielle Harbowy.)

Penises on Mars? Grow Up, Internet. — At least it wasn’t cat .gifs.

Life’s Trajectory Seen Through Facebook DataData donated by Facebook users to Stephen Wolfram yields interesting patterns that may reveal how people change over time.

Why I Let My Students Cheat On Their Game Theory ExamTeaching people game theory is good. Making them live it is even better, says UCLA professor Peter Nonacs. (Thanks to David Goldman.)

As they turn 150, Adventists still pray for the apocalypseAdventist leaders say the apocalyptic pull is still strong at church headquarters, especially during planning sessions. “I see that in our education system,” said Beardsley-Hardy. “Not wanting to over-invest in building because Jesus is coming.” Religion doesn’t have to make you stupid, but it sometimes does an awfully good job of exactly that. (Via Slacktivist Fred Clark.)

Jesus and Muhammad and the Question of the State — Juan Cole on scriptural authority for political power. Long but worth the read.

GE Halts Financing for Firearm Retailers as Gun Lenders Vanish — Unlike the gun culture conservatives in senate, GE can read polls that identify an overwhelming support for increased firearms regulation. Good for them.

Scenes From a Multiverse nails the conservative view of gun control

Changing my mind on nuclear disarmament — Charlie Stross is fascinating.

The Problem of Redaction — Hah. Interesting security wonk stuff. This seems right up [info]autopope‘s alley. (Thanks to [info]seventorches.)

Intelligence Is No Guarantee of Good Judgment — Conservative commentator Daniel Larison: [T]here was a frightening resemblance between Romney and Bush in their shared overconfidence and ignorance about the world. Romney endorsed misguided foreign policy ideas because he didn’t know much about the subject, didn’t care about it very much, paid it very little attention.

Bush 43: ‘History will ultimately judge … I’m a content man’ — He was completely delusional while in office. I don’t know he’d be any less delusional now.

Fight Club on the Hill — After thirty years of their proclaiming the evils of government, is it any surprise we have a Republican Congress that cannot govern? I continue surprised at the collapse of Republican party discipline, however. Another Bush 43 legacy, that, and one of the very few things America and the world should thank him for.

GOP quits public policyEvidence reveals that today’s conservatives have been historically bad at writing bills or developing an agenda. When you elect people to govern who don’t believe in good government, why would you expect anything like good government? Conservatives: ruining America for the majority of us.

President Obama to daughters: if you get a tattoo, I will too

QotD?: Describe in single words, only the good things that come into your mind about your mother.


4/25/2013
Writing time yesterday: 1.0 hours (2,300 words on Original Destiny, Manifest Sin)
Hours slept: 5.75 hours (solid)
Body movement: 0.5 hours (very carefully on the stationary bike)
Weight: 246.4
Number of FEMA troops on my block helping welfare recipients buy cell phones and big screen tbs: 0
Currently reading: Carpe Jugulum by Terry Pratchett

[links] Link salad knows the cider’s laced with acid

Magazine Monday: Subterranean, Spring 2013 — Including a review of my Green novelette, “A Stranger Comes to Kalimpura”. I liked this bit: Green’s voice is, as always, sharp and clear and pitiless. She is a haunting character.

Lois Tilton reviews “A Stranger Comes to Kalimpura” — She didn’t like it quite so much.

Cancer Centers Racing to Map Patients’ Genes — Welcome to my life.

What’s Tylenol Doing to Our Minds?The same pathways that help with physical pain seem to moderate existential distress. Wow. (Via [info]danjite.)

If It Ain’t Broke, Don’t Fix It: Ancient Computers in Use Today — (Via @daviddlevine.)

Inside the Race to Build the World’s Fastest Bitcoin Miner — Stories like this are making me feel like a tech dinosaur.

Two-Track MindThe MTA’s “track geometry car” slides around through the New York City subway, using “a variety of sensors, measuring systems, and data management [software] to create a profile of the track being inspected.” This is cool.

Microraptor: A 4-Winged, Fish-Eating Dinosaur

Fellowship of the Tree RingsNew Zealand researchers probe history and climate science by looking at wood. It’s pretty amazing how liberals have planted evidence for climate change even deep inside ancient trees. Thank God we have Rush Limbaugh and the Republican Party to keep us focused on the truth instead of that pesky old reality.

Exploring public concerns about geoengineering the climateUK researchers talk about pumping reflective aerosols into the atmosphere. What could possibly go wrong?

Terrorism and the other ReligionsIt takes a peculiar sort of blindness to see Christians of European heritage as “nice” and Muslims and inherently violent, given the twentieth century death toll.

Actual 4th Grade science test in South Carolina — I hope to Ghu this is a spoof. Thanks to Poe’s Law, it’s impossible to separate conservative willful ignorance from parody of conservative willful ignorance. I simply do not understand how any parent would want to so dreadfully miseducate their child. (Via [info]goulo.)

2nd Child of Pa. Couple Dies After Only Praying — Religion really can make you stupid. Fatally stupid. The deliberate miseducation and intellectual stunting so beloved of religious conservatives is bad enough. Those poor kids died of abuse and neglect privileged under the mantle of faith.

FMH Podcast Episode 52: Women That Leave Because of Gender Inequality — What I find fascinating about the blog Feminist Mormon Housewives is the intellectual train wreck always in progress there. Most of the post and comments on that blog are from intelligent, progressively-minded women who are struggling mightily to reconcile what their education and identities tell them with what their faith demands of them by way of subservience, submittal and acceptance of discrimination and flat counterfactuals. To my atheist outsider’s view, almost all of them would a lot happier listening to themselves rather than their faith.

GOP Ex-Congressman Testifies About Struggle Getting Visa For His Gay Partner — Words fail me. You do remember you’re a Republican, right? Further proof that no one likes conservative policies when applied to them personally.

Texas wants federal disaster aid it refused to give others — Ah, the justly famed intellectual consistency of conservatives is once more on display. Of course, these are Sarah Palin’s “real Americans” in trouble, not undeserving East Coast liberals.

The Senate’s gun control fail: dead children and monied politicians — A UK perspective. A sane man’s contempt for the United States Senate must now be certain and complete. Given the inertia on even the most modest legislative response to the mass murder of schoolchildren, those still credulous enough to believe that our governance is representative of popular will are either Barnum-sized suckers, or worse, tacit participants in tragedies soon to come.

Jeff Flake’s Rhetorical Games On Background Checks Come Back To Haunt Him — Speaking of intellectual consistency. As ever, conservatives value their guns over your safety.

Arkansas county GOP is unhappy that we can’t shoot politicians, as the Second Amendment intended — More of that measured reason we have all come to expect from conservatives in the gun culture. I sure feel safer knowing people like this are exercising their Second Amendment rights to theoretical defense of essential liberties.

WSJ Columnist Taranto Uses Gabby Giffords’ Injuries To Silence Her On Gun Violence — Stay classy, conservative America. It’s what you do best. (Honestly, if I were a Republican, I’d die of shame.)

‘I am the senator. You are the citizen. You need to be quiet.’ — This is how Republicans respect our democracy. (Via Slacktivist Fred Clark.)

QotD?: What is the Holy Spirit crying?


4/23/2013
Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo day)
Hours slept: 8.0 hours (solid)
Body movement: 0.5 hours (very carefully on the stationary bike)
Weight: n/a (couldn’t stand on scale due to injured foot)
Number of FEMA troops on my block faking evidence for climate change: 0
Currently reading: Carpe Jugulum by Terry Pratchett

[links] Link salad wakes up in Austin having eaten chicken fried steak the night before

50 Absolutely Stunning 3D Street Art (Paintings) — Wow. (Via [info]shelly_rae.)

“Sorry” doesn’t change it Noise and Signal on what death means to the survivors. She’s talking about suicide here, but a lot of this applies to my own life as well.

New Film Examines if Internet Addiction Led to a Baby’s Death by Neglect — Sigh. (Via David Goldman.)

Brit challenges downtown Portland’s Mill Ends Park title of ‘world’s smallest city park’ — Hah! (Via [info]mlerules.)

See-through brains clarify connectionsTechnique to make tissue transparent offers three-dimensional view of neural networks.

Dinosaur ’embryo bonebed’ yields delights for researchers

Lost in the Supermarket — This will make you think about what you eat.

When it comes to vaccination, bad news is contagiousAnd on Twitter, good information apparently does not bear repeating. A sad reminder that the American Right does not hold a monopoly on willful ignorance and anti-science idiocy.

Noah’s Flood is proof that climate change isn’t man-made, says GOP — I can’t possibly comment on this one. It’s too mind boggling as it stands.

Climate Change: The Moral ChoicesThe effects of global warming will persist for hundreds of years. What are our responsibilities and duties today to help safeguard the distant future? That is the question ethicists are now asking. Good luck with trying to apply ethical thinking to a core conservative issue.

New Guidelines Call for Broad Changes in Science EducationEducators unveiled new guidelines on Tuesday that call for sweeping changes in the way science is taught in the United States — including, for the first time, a recommendation that climate change be taught as early as middle school. Well, that will send the wing nuts around the bend. Next thing you know, they’ll be teaching evolution in biology class, and this country will be one of the pits of hell.

How The NRA Secretly Protects People Who Commit Crimes With GunsOver the past few decades, the NRA has tucked so-called “riders” into annual appropriations bills funding various government functions in order to avoid scrutiny in the regular legislative process. While the gun lobby is hardly the only special interest to employ this tactic, they have been enormously successful in undermining basic federal and local gun regulations through these riders. (Via Slacktivist Fred Clark.)

10 Pro-Gun Myths, Shot Down — Ah, more of those liberal “facts” and “data” from the reality-based community, a/k/a the real world. Good thing conservatives and the gun culture don’t have to pay attention to this shit. (Via Marta Murvosh.)

Senator James Inhofe Suggests Newtown Families Can’t Think for Themselves“See, I think it’s so unfair of the administration to hurt these families, to make them think this has something to do with them when, in fact, it doesn’t,” Inhofe explained. And if they believe it does, “that’s because they’ve been told that by the president.” What a festering pit of moral bankruptcy and intellectual dishonesty. Are you proud of your Republican party?

QotD?: What did you have for dinner?


4/11/2013
Writing time yesterday: 5.0 hours (WRPA, editing work on Process of Writing and METAtroplis: Green Space)
Hours slept: 5.25 hours (fitful)
Body movement: 0.0 hours (raining outside, no exercise equipment where I am staying)
Weight: 0.0 (away from home)
Number of FEMA troops on my block enforcing Agenda 21 by closing down golf courses: 0
Currently reading: Hogfather by Terry Pratchett

[links] Link salad takes a hit and its mind goes ping

The Acts of Whimsy cancer fundraiser is still live. It has made goal, but additional support is always welcome, especially given my new complications. Please check it out if you have not done so yet.

A final update from Waterloo Productions on their Kickstarter — Including a video segment I find very hard to watch. Last day for the Kickstarter, so if you were considering giving, go now.

Con or BustHelping Fans of Color Attend SFF Cons. Consider contributing or supporting through bids. Ghu knows we need more diversity in the field.

The World SF Travel Fund — Another worthy cause, for a slightly different flavor of diversity.

Two Guys and Guy on the price of literary success — Heh.

Dilbert on the 10,000 hours of practice required for excellence — Well, duh.

Grammar police: Vibrating pen warns of handwriting mistakesA specialized pen under development is designed to catch writing mistakes and vibrate as a warning. Could it revive the dying art of handwriting? I can think of some entertaining abuses of this thing… (Snurched from James Aquiline.)

Wi-Fi “as free as air”—the totally false story that refuses to dieJournalism goes wrong and just keeps getting worse. No free wi-fi for you! (Via David Goldman.)

Facebook is malware, people suddenly realize

Fat Dads’ Epigenetic LegacyChildren with obese fathers show epigenetic changes that may affect their health.

Cancer reprograms immune cells to avoid an attackCause a specific type of white blood cell to change its identity.

Superomniphobic Material Vigorously Repels All Fluids — (Snurched from Daily Idioms, Annotated.)

Moth Drives Robot, Cruising for a LadyThe insect’s mate-seeking behavior could help researchers program self-driving robots to track airborne chemicals. — I’ve been on dates like that.

“Aggressive Pizza-Stealing Dog” Makes Bail — Ah, Oregon.

The Sockeye’s Secret Compass — Magnetic fish?

Asteroid to Make Closest Flyby in HistoryResearchers keeping an eye on trajectory that will bring it within 18,000 miles of Earth. Recorded history, to be more accurate.

35 Ancient Pyramids Discovered in Sudan Necropolis

Dinosaur extinction: Scientists estimate ‘most accurate’ dateScientists believe they have determined the most precise date yet for the extinction of dinosaurs.

A Cheap and Easy Plan to Stop Global WarmingIntentionally engineering Earth’s atmosphere to offset rising temperatures could be far more doable than you imagine, says David Keith. But is it a good idea?

Marco Rubio: Another Senator Who Doubts Global WarmingRubio goes on, saying, “I understand people say there’s a significant scientific consensus on that issue, but I’ve actually seen reasonable debate on that principle.” Actually, no he hasn’t. There has been no reasonable debate, at least not from the deniers, who for the overwhelmingly most part are not climate scientists, who twist data, who leave out critical information, who use cherry-picked graphs, and who resort to outrageous ad hominems to cast doubt on the reality of global warming. Rhat’s because he’s a conservative. “Reasonable debate” means to a Republican, “anything which might support my ideological convictions, no matter how false or outrageous.” Rubio probably does know better, but he also knows that telling the truth will cost him vote in the lunatic asylum that is the Republican base.

Tendency to fear is strong political influenceEducation, they found, had an equally large influence on out-group attitudes, with more highly educated people displaying more supportive attitudes toward out-groups and education having a substantial mediating influence on the correlation between parental fear and child out-group attitudes. Which is precisely why conservatives work so very hard to stunt public education, and control as much of the process as they can.

A Short Note on Mormon Theology and Transgender Identities

Choose Now. Which Side of History Will You Be On? — I wish every conservative in America would read this article. (Snurched from Slacktivist Fred Clark

New Rove Effort Has G.O.P. AflameTheir battle with Democrats will have to wait. For now, Republicans have their hands full fighting one another. The party of “legitimate rape” is trying to purge its cranks and bigots. Which would leave the GOP small enough to hold its national convention inside a Denny’s restaurant. Whither the poor, neglected angry white man so beloved of generations of GOP pols?

The Persistence of Racial Resentment — Without racism fueling angry white men, the GOP would not exist as a meaningful political party.

QotD?: Will your heart pump? Will your blood sing?


2/8/2013
Writing time yesterday: 0.75 hours (1,000 words on a spec novella to 3,000 words, plus some WRPA)
Hours slept: 7.25 hours (fitful)
Body movement: 0.5 hours stationary bicycle
Weight: 230.2
Number of FEMA troops on my block protecting women from violence: 0
Currently reading: Mort by Terry Pratchett

[links] Link salad slowly comes back online

The Acts of Whimsy cancer fundraiser and the Lakeside Kickstarter for the documentary about me, [info]the_child, and cancer are still live. Both have made goal, but additional support is always welcome. Please check them out if you have not done so yet.

How to Write Like My Dad[info]the_child‘s Act of Whimsy.

Bryan Thomas Sxhmidt with a take on Kalimpura

Featured Author Review: Kalimpura by Jay Lake

Saturday salmagundi — In which I am somewhat hilariously mentioned.

Timeline of the One Ring — Mmm. Filthy hobbitses. (Snurched from Andrew Wheeler.)

Scientists Build A Working Tractor Beam

Chinese Physicists Build “Ghost” Cloaking DeviceA working invisibility cloak that makes one object look like ghostly versions of another has been built in China.

Drill reaches Antarctica’s under-ice Lake Whillans

Dung Beetle Uses The Milky Way For Navigation, First Animal Found To Do So — I’d be more impressed if it was the other way around.

Nature Has A Formula That Tells Us When It’s Time To Die — This is fascinating.

The Happiness MachineHow Google became such a great place to work.

Why You Truly Never Leave High SchoolNew science on its corrosive, traumatizing effects.

The Preppers Next Door — Antisocial lunacy comes in many forms.

Feds: ‘Monsignor Meth’ dealt drug, bought sex shop — Really, how can atheists possibly have ethics or morals without religious guidance?

Mali rebels fleeing Timbuktu burn library full of ancient manuscriptsTown’s mayor says Islamist insurgents torched two buildings containing priceless books as French-led troops approached. I do not understand why people think religious values make for good government and society. Religious values just burned one of the most precious ancient libraries in the world. Religious values destroyed the Buddhas of Bamiyan. There’s a lot of reasons I’m an atheist, and these are some of them.

Why I Don’t Own A GunUltimately I choose to live without guns because, a) I don’t hunt, b) I’m not a police officer, c) I choose to live gently in a violent world. I choose not to help swell the ranks of the armed in our society. I want to contribute to a more peaceable and gentle society. Does that mean I’m unsafe? No, I don’t think so. But if I am unsafe, well, then I choose to be unsafe. (Via Slacktivist Fred Clark.)

Growing Up With Roe: How a Trip to the Eye Doctor Created a Lifelong Advocate for Reproductive Rights — (Via Slacktivist Fred Clark.)

Texas, where science and history have become ideological battlegroundsPBS will show the story of the Texas State School Board’s assault on facts. This conservative assault on those liberal “facts” and “data” has been going on pretty much all my life, with little response from the reality-based community.

Jindal, courage is not enough — Good luck shedding that “stupid party” label, GOP. Until you stop trying to generate more angry white men as your basic electoral strategy, you’ve painted yourself into that corner.

Why the GOP Could Be in the Wilderness For a Long Time

QotD?: Did you miss me?


1/28/2013
Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (still in post-operative recovery)
Hours slept: 8.0 hours (fitful)
Body movement: 0.0 hours (post-operative recovery)
Weight: n/a (forgot)
Number of FEMA troops on my block enforcing disability rights: 0
Currently reading: The Hydrogen Sonata by Iain M. Banks

[links] Link salad takes the day off from work to recover from chemo

Double Negative — Grammar tough guys on film. Hahah. (Via [info]willyumtx.)

First liver cancer ‘chemo-bath’ in the UK — Hmm.

Finding the Courage to Reveal a Fetish — All depends on who you hang out with, now, doesn’t it?

Invisibility cloaking in ‘perfect’ demonstrationScientists have succeeded in “cloaking” an object perfectly for the first time, rendering a centimetre-scale cylinder invisible to microwaves.

Looks like ice, burns like a candle: Frozen methane hydrate may be new Alaska energy source

Online Courses Put Pressure on Third-World UniversitiesHow a teacher in El Salvador became an advocate of massive open online courses, and why hardly anyone listens to him yet.

Would You Buy A Gun? — Women and guns. Just what America needs. More guns. Those thirty deaths a day from gun violence are certainly worth it, aren’t they? (Via Marta Murvosh.)

“God Knew We Would Have Satellites”: A Map of Jesus In Arabia — Uh, yeah. Pareidola run rampant.

When God is Your LifeboatIf your way of thinking is that it is God’s plan to have this Earth go to hell because in that said aforementioned deity is your lifeboat then what does it matter if life on this planet goes to “hell in a hand basket.” Such thinking is delusional and Mr. Erickson in any other country would be dismissed as a lunatic not to mention as a seriously misguided practioncer of Christian theology. That line of thinking is starkly dangerous and should be universally condemned for what it is, insanity. (Via Slacktivist Fred Clark.)

Global warming felt by space junk, satellitesManmade increases in carbon dioxide might be having effects that are larger than expected.

Poles apart: satellites reveal why Antarctic sea ice grows as Arctic meltsUS military satellite data exposes complexity of climate change and impact of changing wind patterns on polar regions. Sorry, denialists, the growth of Antarctic sea ice isn’t a “gotcha” for climate change. Science, unlike ideology, is capable of accepting and explaining apparent contradictions. Welcome to life in the reality-based community.

Pandas Threatened by Climate ChangeBetween 80 and 100 percent of livable habitat will disappear from a major panda enclave in China. Amazing, the lengths liberals will go to in order to perpetrate the climate change hoax. Including wiping out an entire major Chinese ecosphere. Thank god we have the Republican Party to keep us straight on this stuff.

Is America Ready for a White, Male Secretary of State? — John Boehner isn’t white, he’s orange, and we know he can cry. Maybe he should be tapped? (Via Marta Murvosh.)

How Oregon differed from nation on presidential vote — This article makes me proud of my adoptive home state.

Will politicians actually heed lessons of Sandy? — Not as long as ideology trumps reality in conservative America, no.

Mitch McConnell: ‘We Have a Voter Mandate Not to Raise Taxes’ — Give the GOP one vote, and they have a mandate. Must be nice, being able to choose the color of the sky in their world. Reminds me of Dick “Dick” Morris saying that a Romney 325 to 213 electoral win be a landslide, but an Obama 332 to 206 electoral was barely “eeked” [sic] out. Um, Dick… Numbers are magic when you’re a conservative.

?otD: Working today?


11/12/2012
Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo)
Body movement: 0.0 hours (chemo recovery)
Hours slept: 10.5 hours (11.0 hours, 8.5 hours solid plus napping)
Weight: 222.0
Number of FEMA troops on my block confiscating guns and enforcing gay marriage: 0
Currently reading: Mirrordance by Lois McMaster Bujold