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[links] Link salad has a Cadillac as big as a whale

Why the Olympics Are a Lot Like “The Hunger Games” — (Via David Goldman.)

A Man Takes A Single Rake to The Beach. And When You Zoom Out And See It… Mind BLOWN. — Wow. (Snurched from Ellen Eades.)

School ditches rules and loses bullies — Most of the kids who bullied me back in the 1970s would have seen this as a happy hunting ground.

Obamacare, Hallelujah! — What the ACA means in real life, to a real human being, my friend Diana Sherman. You know, that same ACA which my conservative friends believe to be the greatest threat to American values since Nazism.

State of the Union address confirmed: Republicans are fringe minority party — A piece on the political polling behind differences between the GOP and Obama. Republicans are on the wrong side of every one of these except, arguably, the immigration question.

Fox Host Says There Is No Gender Gap: ‘Many Women Make Exactly What They’re Worth’ — Confidential to conservatives in America: you’re entitled to your own opinions but you are not entitled to your own facts.

About that ‘government making health care choices for you,’ Ms. McMorris RodgersYes, on the very same day that the Republican House voted on yet another anti-abortion bill, [Republican] Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers actually said: “Republicans believe health care choices should be yours, and not the government’s.”

?otD: Don’t you wish you had a cetaceanlac?


1/30/2014
Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo brain)
Hours slept: 9.0 hours (badly fitful)
Body movement: n/a (post-operative)
Weight: n/a (traveling)
Number of FEMA troops on my block inventing polar vortices: 0
Currently reading: n/a

[links] Link salad still hurts

Sense and sensorbility: the book that lets you feel your protagonist’s painMIT scientists have created a ‘wearable’ book using temperature and lighting to mimic the experiences of a book’s protagonist. (Via AH.)

Why do we get confused about “you and me”? — Ah, grammar.

How Long Have I Got Left? — Yup. This. An oncologist writes about the experience of having cancer. (Via David Goldman.)

Giant leaps of evolution make cancer cells deadly — (Thanks to [info]fjm.)

Transmissible cancer is a time capsule from the earliest dogsTransmissible cancer dates back 11,000 years, has a mix of dog and wolf genes.

Evolutionary selection of stupidity — The concluding graph is awesome. (Via David Goldman.)

First Tests of Prototype Organic Wires Grown from Seedlings

Jelly Donut Shaped Rock Appears on Mars

The Secret Lives of Mormons — The excellent Feminist Mormon Housewives blog with a some heart-rending stories.

Historical Abuse Inquiry hears Sisters of Nazareth nuns ‘were almost psychotic’Nuns’ treatment of children at a residential care home was “bordering on the psychotic”, Northern Ireland’s Historical Abuse Inquiry has been told.

The Pawnshop Abortion DoctorReading this piece, it’s hard to avoid the conclusion that terrorism sometimes works. If you truly believe that abortion is murder, than the killing of George Tiller must be viewed as a success. The killings in the 80s and 90s may well have been bad PR for the movement. But they terrorized doctors and were essential to the broader campaign that cleaved abortion away from mainstream medicine.

NY congressman to reporter: ‘I’ll break you in half’New York Republican Rep. Michael Grimm was not happy when a New York reporter asked him Tuesday night about allegations involving his campaign finances.

My personal Fox News nightmare: Inside a month of self-induced torture Mark Twain said, “Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness,” and I don’t regret the time I spent among the Foxians. I still believe that what the network does, and the way they do it is deeply damaging to our society—but I think I understand the Fox universe much more clearly. And if, as a result, I wind up being more skeptical of my own certainty and less apt to bore people with my anger, then it was time well spent.

?otD: Ow?


1/29/2014
Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo brain)
Hours slept: 10.0 hours (badly fitful)
Body movement: n/a (post-operative)
Weight: n/a (traveling)
Number of FEMA troops on my block inventing polar vortices: 0
Currently reading: Raising Steam by Terry Pratchett

[links] Link salad watches the Cadillacs go creeping now through the night and the poison gas

The Science Fiction Author on Trial (NIH trial, that is!) fundraiser made goal. Thank you! Meanwhile, I am still in the hospital recovering from the surgery required for the first phase TIL cell harvest. We are working on some stretch goals, if you’re interested. Keep an eye out.

Jay Lake: Der verborgene Hof – DREIMAL IM PREISRÄTSEL AUF SFBASAR.DE! — More on the German edition of Green.

A Lion in the Garden — The miracle of translation.

Homophonophobia — Ah,linguistics humor.

Antique Phonograph with Stirling Engine Hot Air Motor — Mmm. Alcohol fueled phonograph! What could possibly go wrong? (Via [info]danjite.)

What reviewers said about the first Mac when it debuted 30 years ago

The 25 most common passwords of 2013

American Locomotive: 1943 — Tanks built in a train plant.

Scientific Thinking in Business More than technology, businesses need the scientific method.

Fox News Math Fail: 137% Of Likely NJ Voters Weigh In On Gov. Christie’s GWB Scandal (INFOGRAPHIC) — Hello? FOX wrong about basic things like arithmetic. This just in: water is wet. (Snurched from Steve Buhcheit.)

Progressive Kristallnacht Coming?I would call attention to the parallels of Nazi Germany to its war on its “one percent,” namely its Jews, to the progressive war on the American one percent, namely the “rich.” This is in the Wall Street Journal. Sometimes there simply are no words.

The Brittle Grip, Part 2 — Josh Marshall with some analysis of the Perkins piece. The extremely wealthy are objectively far wealthier, far more politically powerful and find a far more indulgent political class than at any time in almost a century – at least. And yet at the same time they palpably feel more isolated, abused and powerless than at any time over the same period and sense some genuine peril to the whole mix of privileges, power and wealth they hold. There is a disconnect there that is so massive and glaring that it demands some sociocultural explanation.

GOProud co-founder gives up, leaves Republican Party[T]his is a man who has spent five years with his hand on an oven burner suddenly phoning up a reporter and saying “You know what? Fire hot.”

Long Grove plan may pave way to privatize public roads — Living in Libertarian paradise… Me, I am the kind of pinko who likes the fire department to be able to reach my house, and the food distributors to reach my neighborhood grocery stores. (Snurched from Steve Buhcheit.)

Time To Start Asking Republicans Directly: How Much Sex Is Too Much Sex? — Since Mike Huckabee raised the issue, it’s time to start discussing it. This is a terrific beginning.

?otD: All these hunters who are shrieking now, oh do they speak for us?


1/26/2014
Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo brain)
Hours slept: 5.0 hours (badly interrupted)
Body movement: n/a (in hospital)
Weight: n/a (in hospital)
Number of FEMA troops on my block inventing polar vortices: 0
Currently reading: n/a (chemo brain)

[links] Link salad has a mysterious ache in its side

The Science Fiction Author on Trial (NIH trial, that is!) fundraiser made goal. Thank you! We are working on some stretch goals, if you’re interested. Keep an eye out.

A map showing lexical distance (how much similarity there is between vocabularies) among the languages of Europe — Cool…

The Ancient Ghost City of Ani — Haunting photos.

The pending demise of Facebook (and Princeton) — This is hilarious in a very geeky way.

1984 Macintosh vs. Apple iMac: Spec Showdown

Here’s What It Looked Like When Marijuana Was Growing All Over Brooklyn — (Thanks to Lisa Costello.)

6 reasons female nudity can be powerfulA reporter’s question about Lena Dunham’s nudity pointed to a bigger issue: Naked women can threaten the status quo.

Behold, the Kindle of the 16th CenturyJust one of the “various and ingenious machines” of Captain Agostino Ramelli. (Thanks to [info]threeoutside.)

Inside Monopoly’s secret war against the Third Reich “Ask and it shall be given you; seek and ye shall find.” Fascinating. (Via David Goldman.)

Workers of the World, Faint! — I got nothing. (Via David Goldman.)

Astrobiology Underground — Deep, hot life.

Biodiversity can flourish on an urban planetFor instance, cities now support 20 percent of the world’s bird species.

Source of water ice on dark side of the Moon revealed?Interplanetary dust regularly showers the Earth and other Solar System bodies.

Rover’s decade on Mars surprises NASA A decade after landing on Mars, the rover Opportunity is still chugging along.

China Installed More Solar Power in 2013 than the US has in its Whole History — Lux fiat, baby.

The Penance of Glenn Beck — He’s a little tiny bit sorry now.

Michigan GOP official: ‘Herd all the Indians’ to Detroit, build a fence and throw in corn

Mike Huckabee and women’s uncontrolled libido, or, Uncle Sugar — This one pretty much speaks for itself. I don’t need to snark.

Why Republicans Keep Calling Women Sluts — A helpful exegesis on Huckabee’s unfortunate remarks.

?otD: Did you see them? It was dark, they were big.


1/25/2014
Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo brain)
Hours slept: 6.0 hours (badly interrupted)
Body movement: n/a (in hospital)
Weight: n/a (in hospital)
Number of FEMA troops on my block inventing polar vortices: 0
Currently reading: n/a (chemo brain)

[links] Link salad has no idea where the hell it is today

Water Spout at Liguria, Italy

Religious meteorology needs more rigorous science — Man, this is hilarious.

Get off my lawn or I’ll shoot you dead — Mmm. Gun safety.

Former conservative hero and Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell indicted — Because character counts.

Little has changed year after GOP’s planned reboot“The issue that remains an open book for the Republicans is: What is the character of the party?” said Ari Fleischer, a top aide to President George W. Bush, who helped author the report of the “Growth and Opportunity Project. “Are we a more inclusive and welcoming party yet?” Uh… Self awareness much?

Florida GOP House Candidate: President Obama Should Be Executed

It Is Expensive to Be Poor Minimum-wage jobs are physically demanding, have unpredictable schedules, and pay so meagerly that workers can’t save up enough to move on. (Via Slacktivist Fred Clark.)

?otD: Did you wake up in the same state you went to sleep in?


1/22/2014
Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo brain)
Hours slept: 3.0 hours (non-contiguous)
Body movement: n/a (traveling)
Weight: n/a (traveling)
Number of FEMA troops on my block inventing polar vortices: 0
Currently reading: n/a (chemo brain)

[links] Link salad wishes you a thoughtful and reflective Martin Luther King Day

Fun with English Oronyms — I didn’t know the word ‘oronym’, so I’ve learned something new. Yay!

A sweet and savory step too far? New fast food chain specializes in CHOCOLATE deep-fried chicken — Because reasons. (Thanks, I think, to [info]garyomaha.)

‘Sky Whale’ Future of Flight?

Giant laser could arrange particles into enormous space telescope — What could possibly go wrong?

Did life start with a replicating molecule or a metabolism?Despite lots of progress on the origins of biomolecules, we’re still not sure.

Science: Australia Is a Gigantic SpongeHow rising sea levels are affected by one weird continent (Via The Nib.)

Trans woman asks anti-gay bigot if he`d like to stone her

World’s 85 richest have same wealth as 3.5 billion poorest — I wonder which group works harder. Well, ok. Actually, I don’t wonder.

Most of you have no idea what Martin Luther King actually did — (Via [info]danjite.)

?otD: Do you remember the Revered Dr. King?


1/20/2014
Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo brain)
Hours slept: 6.75 hours (solid)
Body movement: 30 minute stationary bike ride
Weight: 239.6
Number of FEMA troops on my block BENGHAZI! BENGHAZI! BENGHAZI!: 0
Currently reading: n/a (chemo brain)

[politics] The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends towards justice

I’m not convinced that the universe actually does bend towards justice, but there’s been a reasonable approximation of that here in the West since the Enlightenment. Other cultures, other paths, but that’s the one I’m familiar with.

When you look at the moral arc of the history of the United States, something almost startling very rapidly becomes clear.

When it came to slavery, conservatives were on the wrong side of history.

When it came to Jim Crow, conservatives were on the wrong side of history.

When it came to women’s suffrage, conservatives were on the wrong side of history.

When it came to child labor, conservatives were on the wrong side of history.

When it came to workplace safety, paid time off, and forty-hour work weeks, conservatives were on the wrong side of history.

When it came to the Great Depression, conservatives were on the wrong side of history.

When it came to the New Deal, conservatives were on the wrong side of history.

When it came to entering World War II to fight fascism, conservatives were on the wrong side of history.

When it came to racial integration, conservatives were on the wrong side of history.

When it came to interracial marriage, conservatives were on the wrong side of history.

When it came to the minimum wage, and every effort since to raise the minimum wage, conservatives were on the wrong side of history.

When it came to women’s economic independence and the Equal Credit Opportunity Act, conservatives were on the wrong side of history.

When it came to women’s safety on issues such as marital rape, conservatives were on the wrong side of history.

When it came to making healthcare accessible to as many citizens as possible, conservatives were on the wrong side of history.

Every single one of those issues was promoted by progressive reformers. Every single one of those issues was opposed by the conservatives of the day. Viciously so in many cases. Violently so in some.

Given the track record of conservatives over the past two centuries, why should we believe them now about gay marriage? Or equal pay for equal work? Or income inequality?

Why should we believe conservatives on any issue of social justice?

They’ve been on the wrong side of history every time.

[links] Link salad creaks through the weekend

Always fighting the storm, afraid to suffer the woundLisa Costello on acceptance and coping with my impending death.

Ten Things You May Not Know About Ebook Prices — (Via D. Scott Frey.)

Nimoy Sings: 1968 — Given the pattern on Nimoy’s shirt, we can only be grateful this photo isn’t in color.

Apogee’s Full Moon — It’s a mighty cool photo, but be sure to read the copy as well.

Hiroo Onoda, Japanese soldier who long refused to surrender, dies at 91After losing his comrades to various circumstances, Onoda was eventually persuaded to come out of hiding in 1974. His former commanding officer traveled to Lubang to see him and tell him he was released from his military duties. In his battered old army uniform, Onoda handed over his sword, nearly 30 years after Japan surrendered.

Bone fragment ‘could be King Alfred or son Edward’

Scratching out a Living on Ellesmere IslandRetreating glaciers in the high arctic have left behind heaps of debris and new territory for cold-loving plants to colonize.

Three arguments about climate change that should never be used — Yeah, good luck with that. Climate change denialism isn’t an evidence-based process, and reason doesn’t enter in to. Exactly like evolution denialists, climate change denialists argue backwards from an ideological conclusion and try to subvert the language of evidence and reason to support their article of faith. So providing evidence-based reasoning against ideological denialist arguments is pointless.

Company Behind West Virginia’s Chemical Spill Files For Bankruptcy — Mmm, industry self-regulation for the win. All those meddlesome, job-killing Federal regulations wouldn’t have done anything except likely prevent the spill, and ensure the company could cover the damages if the spilled happened anyway. We don’t want that sort of thing in a free society, do we? Also, this. Because freedom! And evil liberals who happen to think clean drinking water might be important!

The GOP’s War on Science Endangering America: Climate Change, Evolution, RegulationThe Republican Party is increasingly emerging as an anti-science party. Since American greatness was built on its science and technology (and not on the odd cult of biblical inerrancy), this development is a danger to the republic, and, indeed, to the world. The US used to be about solving problems, about a can-do spirit, not about denying concrete reality. I would have said, “has long since emerged”. Conservatives will have an enormous amount to answer for in America’s degraded future, but they will never see or understand that.

Judge strikes down North Carolina ultrasound abortion law — Slowly, sanity and morality and justice creep back into America despite concerted conservative efforts to the contrary. (Via David Goldman.)

Christians aren’t being driven out of public life – they’re just losing their unfair advantages One of the prickly issues for a society that attempts to be liberal is how tolerant it must be of the intolerant. Writing in the last issue of this magazine, Cristina Odone says that she feels her rights as a taxpayer, a citizen and a Christian have been trampled on. She warns of a world around the corner in which religion will be a secret activity behind closed doors. So, what is this dystopian vision of the future? A world where if you run a bed and breakfast, you cannot discriminate against gay couples, and you have to abide by the rules of the job you are contracted to do. That’s it, really. (Via [info]rekre8.)

America is becoming more liberal — If true, this offers some hope for future sanity in this country. The Reagan and post-Reagan conservative experiment has failed by almost every conceivable metric. Maybe it’s time to try optimism, growth and tolerance instead.

Obama Outlines 5 Surveillance Reforms — Yet somehow the surveillance state will continue to proper. Color me cynical.

?otD: Did you sleep in today?


1/18/2014
Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo brain)
Hours slept: 8.75 hours (interrupted)
Body movement: 30 minute stationary bike ride
Weight: 239.0
Number of FEMA troops on my block BENGHAZI! BENGHAZI! BENGHAZI!: 0
Currently reading: n/a (chemo brain)

[links] Link salad for a thirsty Thursday

Surviving the World on creative writing — Uh…

A Toast Story — You just have to read this one all the way through. I simply cannot do it justice in a couple of lines of commentary or throwaway snark. (Via David Goldman.)

What not to say to a transgender person — What a curious, and encouraging, thing to see on CNN.com, of all places. Slowly the culture moves in the right direction. (Assuming that you, like me, believe tolerance, inclusiveness and human rights for every American is the right direction.)

Thai graft body to probe rice subsidies, adding to PM’s woes amid protests — The story itself doesn’t mean much to me one way or the other, but it took me several tries to read the headline as anything other than some kind of incredibly creepy Dr. Moreau thing about grafting bodies together.

Can history leave towns struck in places with bad locational fundamentals?

34 nuclear missile officers cheated on tests, Air Force says — Well, that’s comforting as hell.

Energy Teleportation Overcomes Distance Limit The ability to teleport energy from one location to another could revolutionise the way quantum devices operate, but only if it can be made to work over practical distances. Now physicists think they know how. I love living in the future.

Why plural marriages make sense — An opinion piece connecting the interests of a certain stripe of the Mormon community with the interests of the polyamorous community. Not a usual conjoining, to be sure.

Vatican To Be Grilled By UN On Allegations It Enabled Rape Of ChildrenThe Vatican is gearing up for a bruising showdown over the global priest sex abuse scandal, forced for the first time to defend itself at length and in public against allegations it enabled the rape of thousands of children by protecting pedophile priests and its own reputation at the expense of victims. Calling the Vatican’s long-term campaign of protection of child rapist an “allegation” is astonishingly kind to one of the most vile action taken by a putative moral organization in modern times. I’m pretty sure the Catholic church’s wholesale ruination of children’s lives over decades has been exhaustively demonstrated beyond any reasonable doubt.

The Dark-Tinted, Truth-Filled Reading List We Owe Our Kids — A Christianist view of fiction. I especially like this observation: I would understand if hard-bitten secularists were the ones feeding narrative meringue to their children with false enthusiasm. They believe their kids will eventually grow up and realize how terrible, grinding, and meaningless reality really is. Wow. Has that author ever actually met a secularist? That is an amazingly smug, ridiculous caricature, though I suppose it’s pleasantly self-valorizing for a certain kind of faithholder to pretend that’s how atheists and secularists see the world.

Sen. Burr won’t say why he’s blocking a nominee he recommended — Once again the much vaunted intellectual consistency and sterling character of the American right is proudly on display.

So long, IRS ‘scandal’The IRS faux-scandal, which has died with a whimper, is actually in the news quite a bit right now for a couple of reasons. The first is the Republicans preoccupation with comparing President Obama’s handling of the IRS story with Gov. Chris Christie’s (R) handling of his bridge scandal. But as the FBI’s disinterest helps remind us, there is no equivalence here – the Christie administration, as the governor himself now admits, engaged in actual misconduct. The IRS story, on the other hand, is a mirage. And then there’s House Oversight Committee Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.). (Via David Goldman.)

An actual advance in human freedom in New Mexico. No surprise that conservatives hate it. — Ah, right to die.

Rush Limbaugh: If Christie was a true conservative, whether he lied ‘wouldn’t matter’ — Conservatives get a free pass on ethics. Duh. Also, water is wet. Why is this news? There has never been ethical consistency on the American Right. That’s why they yammer so much about character and morality: to cover up their own massive hypocrisy.

?otD: What will you drink today?


1/16/2014
Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo brain)
Hours slept: 8.0 hours (solid)
Body movement: 30 minute stationary bike ride
Weight: 238.4
Number of FEMA troops on my block BENGHAZI! BENGHAZI! BENGHAZI!: 0
Currently reading: n/a (chemo brain)

[links] Link salad loves it some sticky tracklements

Journalists vs ePatient — and How It Got Ugly — Janet Freeman-Daily does a much better job of responding to the Kellers than I did.

My Personal Genome Project public profile — The other side, as it were, of my open source Whole Genome Sequencing.

Does Illumina Have the First $1,000 Genome?Illumina announces a new high-end sequencer made for “factory-scale” sequencing of human genomes. These are the guys who did my (much more expensive) sequencing last year. Hooray for advances!

‘You Have to Know History to Actually Teach It’ An interview with Eric Foner, Pulitzer prize-winning author of The Fiery Trial: Abraham Lincoln and American Slavery.

Mile marker 420 in CO changed to thwart thieves — Duuude…

The Modest Victorian Proposal to Electroplate Corpses Into Beautiful Statues — UH, yeah. Heh. (Via [info]willyumtx.)

Challenger Disaster — From a family photo album. (Thanks to Reynardo the Red.)

Massive Hole Discovered Under Antarctica, Bigger Than The Grand Canyon

Melting glaciers in northern Italy reveal corpses of WW1 soldiersThe glaciers of the Italian Alps are slowly melting to reveal horrors from the Great War, preserved for nearly a century. (Via [info]danjite.)

Low oxygen blamed for complete fish loss in Nev. marina

Acceptance of global warming rises on warm days — Yeah. And polling climate change is like polling gravity or evolution. It doesn’t get any less true. Reality is indifferent to ideological willful ignorance.

Medicare Is Grievously Overpaying for Penis PumpsThe reason that Medicare is more efficient than private insurance, usually, is that it has the power to negotiate prices from suppliers. When we deny it that ability, such as with prescription drugs, the problem is far more severe than overpaying for a few vacuum erection systems. (Via David Goldman.)

As part of budget deal, Congress blocks light bulb efficiency standards — The whole conservative fixation on light bulbs is just bizarre. Especially considering the efficiency standards they hate so much as a liberal intrusion were a Bush administration initiative. On they other hand, conservatives hate the ACA, which they invented. Logic is a distinct disadvantage for what passes for thought among Republicans.

State efforts to block Obamacare are working, study findsStates whose governments are hostile to Obamacare are hindering efforts to get people signed up for health insurance, according to a study released Tuesday. Laws restricting outreach and enrollment efforts have handicapped community health centers that are a key component of plans to get health insurance to millions of Americans who lack it, researchers at George Washington University found. Because denying people affordable access to healthcare is the patriotic thing to do. Any Republican can tell you letting people get sick and die is what’s best for America, given the alternatives. (Via David Goldman.)

Oklahoma ban on gay marriage ruled unconstitutional — Gee, imagine that. What, what? Depriving a class of citizens of their basic human and civil rights is unconstitutional? Ask any conservative: persecution of people you don’t approve of is the patriotic, Christian thing to do.

Fox News creating its own political cult Fox viewers feel oppressed and victimized because they’ve been told they are being oppressed and victimized, and if facts have to be twisted and even fabricated to justify those sentiments, they and the network are clearly willing to live inside that warped reality. The conservative movement gleefully mocks the reality-based community, and clings desperately to views that are starkly contrary to any evidence-based analysis. What the hell else would you expect from the Fox audience?

Susan G. Komen’s attack on Planned Parenthood cost Komen $77m, 22% of its income — It’s so rare that right wing operatives pay any price at all for their destructive behavior. This story cheers me unduly.

County GOP Auctions Rifle In MLK’s Honor — Oh, geese, this is Portland, no less. Stay classy, conservative America. It’s what you do best.

Prosecutors: This wasn’t the first blow-up for Florida theater shooter Curtis Reeves — A retired police officer, armed, in theoretical defense of his essential liberties killed a man for texting in the theater after feeling threatened by a bag of popcorn. And given conservative, pro-gun “stand your ground laws”, might even get away with it. Tell me again how guns make us all safer? Tell me again why any sane and civilized society allows millions of its citizens the power of summary execution based on their sole judgement in moments of stress? If you’re a gun owner, tell me why this is okay with you. If it’s not okay with you, tell me why you’re a gun owner. Because all I can ever see is that my life and safety are worth less than the sum of the gun culture’s fears.

?otD: Do you relish chutney?


1/15/2014
Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo brain)
Hours slept: 7.5 hours (interrupted)
Body movement: 30 minute stationary bike ride
Weight: 238.6
Number of FEMA troops on my block closing bridge lanes for political payback: 0
Currently reading: n/a (chemo brain)

[links] Link salad knows there is a time to dance, a time to mourn

This Guy’s Wife Got Cancer, So He Did Something Unforgettable. The Last 3 Photos Destroyed Me. — (Via Joyce Scrivner.)

Bill Keller, Get Well Soon: You’re sick — More on the criticism of people who fight their cancer battles in public. This is sad, terrible stuff. Nostalgia for the old conspiracy of silence surround serious illness is so profoundly misplaced and inhumane. (Via [info]goulo.)

Jewish Surnames Explained

Kevin Andrew Murphy on Jack Chick passing the Bechdel test with respect to gaming — Oh, wow. My head hurts.

Eating ‘Paleo?’ Don’t Forget Worms and Tubers

The ‘Nutcracker Man’ Diet: Extinct Species Of Early Human Survived on ‘Tiger Nuts,’ Not Meat

Lost Remains of Slain Ancient Queen Unearthed

African tigerfish catch swallows in flight — Yow.

A Trip to the Moon — About Georges Méliès and his 1902 movie, Le voyage dans la lune.

It’s all work and no play for SpaceShipTwo pilot on virgin flight

Virtual Museum of Decorated Windows — This architectural neepery is interesting in a slightly worry way. (Via Daily Idioms, Annotated.)

Why I Bought A House In Detroit For $500 After college, as my friends left Michigan for better opportunities, I was determined to help fix this broken, chaotic city by building my own home in the middle of it. I was 23 years old. (Via Lisa Costello.)

The great decoupling: another phrase for an end to 20th century capital economics

About that consensus on global warming: 9136 agree, 1 disagrees — Climate change denial is like evolution denial. It’s a political position taken for ideological reasons which has no grounding in evidence-based reality. Consider this: no one arrives at either evolution denial or climate change denial after a dispassionate review of the evidence. There is always an ideological starting point, followed by a search for a convincing explanation to justify the desired ideology. That’s pretty much the opposite of how science works. The constant conservative pretense otherwise is a disgrace to American politics, media and education, and a clear and present danger to our national interests. (Via Scrivener’s Error.)

Fossil Fuels causing Antarctic Glacier to Melt Irreversibly, raise Sea Levels — Nothing to see here, citizens. Move along. Just liberal “facts” and “data”, which as any good conservative knows are lies from the pit of Hell.

Beyond Fire and Brimstone — A different view of the Christian ethic of eternal torment. (Thanks to [info]daveraines.)

Catholic Church Didn’t Have a ProblemIt simply never occurred to the Catholic Church to oppose health care plans that offer contraceptive coverage until opposing the Affordable Care and Patient Protection Act became a priority for the Republican Party. Nice to see America’s Christian leadership upholding Biblical standards, which by amazing coincidence swiftly evolve to repeatedly coincide with the conservative political agenda. Smug Republican Jesus smiles upon them. (Via Slacktivist Fred Clark.)

Chemical Spill Shuts Down Much Of W.Va. Capital — Remember kids, regulations are always bad for the economy. That’s the most important thing. Only stupid liberal moonbats care about drinkable water when there’s quarterly profits at stake.

Keeping Public Buildings Free of Guns Proves Too Costly for Kansas TownsReasoning that more guns mean greater safety, Kansas lawmakers voted last year to require cities and counties to make public buildings accessible to people legally carrying concealed weapons. Because 30,000 gun deaths a year is a small price for you and I and everyone else in America to pay for gun owners’ illusion of safety, that’s why.

Road Rage Victim Made Multiple 911 Calls — Another proud gun owner acting in theoretical defense of his essential liberties by slaughtering an innocent driver. Ask any conservative: more guns means more safety. Now ask the victim.

Coffee With RefugeesIn Lebanon’s Mountains, Syrians Face a Grim Future. (Snurched from The Nib.)

Anatomy of an Obamacare ‘horror story’ — Surprise! Conservatives lie about the ACA, Your Liberal Media does no fact checking. Hmm, the sun must have risen in the east this morning. Also, water is wet. (Via David Goldman.)

Democracy and the Christie phenomenonHe is leading up to an explanation as to why people like the bullying tough guy types such as Chris Christie — they are looking for someone to “take charge” in a world in which they feel a loss of control. That’s a pretty good encapsulation of the whole of modern conservatism. That’s what people wanted from Reagan, after all.

Fox’s Hume: Christie Seen As A Bully Because He’s An “Old Fashioned Guy’s Guy” In Today’s “Feminized Atmosphere” — Actually, Christie is seen as a bully because he’s a bully. Pure and simple. To some people, especially many conservatives longing for a powerful authority figure, that’s admirable manliness, but those people who admire this behavior are wrong and frankly a bit sick in the head.

?otD: Is there a time for peace? Is it too late?


1/13/2014
Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo brain)
Hours slept: 7.75 hours (interrupted fitful)
Body movement: 30 minute stationary bike ride
Weight: 238.8
Number of FEMA troops on my block faking evidence for evolution: 0
Currently reading: n/a (chemo brain)

[links] Link salad wakes up in its own bed

Jay Lake livre son génome — I love the translation of my attribution, The author of the largely unknown Jade…

Neanderthals ‘could speak like us’ — “Ooh-bi-doo, I wan’na be like you / I want to walk like you, talk like you, too…“ Everybody sing!

Dutch masters paintings deconstructed — This is pretty intense.

Will Commercial Space Travel Blast Off in 2014?

Big Dig West — Wow, this is serious stupidity up in Seattle, thanks to WSDOT.

Back in the Pulpit After Losing His Church, and Still Supporting Gay Marriage

Cosmas IndicopleustesCosmas composed his Christian Topography over a number of years, after he had retired to monastic life. He aimed at proving, contrary to prevailing Greek and some Christian theories, that the universe had the same shape as Moses’ tabernacle, that it was in the form of a cube and not a sphere. The earth was a flat, oblong table, 12,000 miles long and 6,000 miles wide, surrounded by ocean beyond which was Paradise, where Adam and Eve had lived (cf. II.43). The whole area was surrounded by high, perpendicular mountains on which the vault of heaven rested. Between heaven and earth lay the firmament, dividing the universe into two stages. God and the just dwelt on the upper level, to which man would be admitted after the Resurrection; on the lower was humanity in this life. And see here. (Thanks, ultimately, to Felix Gilman.)

Noah’s Extremely Bad Animal Husbandry AdviceBy their estimates, 16,000 land animals and birds, including dinosaurs, were on the ark. Uh, yeah. (Via Daily Idioms, Annotated.)

Heat Wave Stifles AustraliaTemperatures topping 118° F, 48° C, baked eastern Australia during the final days of 2013 and first week of 2014.

Ford Exec: ‘We Know Everyone Who Breaks The Law’ Thanks To Our GPS In Your Car — Apparently there has since been a retraction. Gee, I wonder why. (Snurched from Steve Buchheit.)

Judge in “kids for cash” ruled liable for damage — It’s so rare for people who work in the judicial system to face consequences for misconduct, especially when the victims are essentially helpless and have no real social power. See our nation’s long and shameful history of essential zero consequences for prosecutorial misconduct, for example. This story continues to amaze me.

Freedom to lie[S]ome members of the court are concerned that the anti-abortion zealots are being obstructed from lying. You can’t blame them. Blatant dishonesty is a big part of the forced childbirth movement strategy and at least a handful of justices are undoubtedly fully on board with that tactic. Yeah, that whole Ten Commandment about not bearing false witness? Smug Republican Jesus gives His followers a pass on that one every time.

NJ Democrat lawmaker on traffic scandal: ‘I do think laws have been broken’ — As any Republican can tell you, rumors of a presidential blow job are far, far more politically important than abuse of power for petty political payback a part of a long term pattern of bullying and intimidation.

?otD: Did you walk alone in restless dreams?


1/12/2014
Writing time yesterday: 0.0 hours (chemo brain)
Hours slept: 7.0 hours (extremely fitful)
Body movement: 30 minute stationary bike ride
Weight: 240.4
Number of FEMA troops on my block faking evidence for evolution: 0
Currently reading: n/a (chemo brain)